Barangay Ginebra San Miguel demolished the Magnolia Hotshots Pambansang Manok in their Christmas day match in Philippine Arena in Bulacan, 89-78.
Similar to last year’s December 25 Manila Clasico edition, Ginebra beats the Hotshots and logged its first victory in the ongoing 2017-18 PBA Philippine Cup.
Gin Kings big man Greg Slaughter dominated the paint and scored 24 points, grabbed 12 rebounds and swatted four shots while 2017 PBA Governors’ Cup Finals MVP LA Tenorio added 15 points, 8 assists and 5 steals.
“I’m really surprised with how well we played,” Gin Kings head coach Tim Cone said. “We weren’t perfect out there but we really played with good energy.”
“This is really his conference,” Cone said of Slaughter.
Since the opening quarter it was all Ginebra but on the third quarter Magnolia made a serious run and closed the gap to just only a single point, 53-52. Then Greg Slaughter, Scottie Thompson, Japeth Aguilar and LA Tenorio made their respective shots and diffused the attempted comeback of Magnolia.
Late in the fourth quarter, a final stand thrown by the Hotshots where they reduced the double-digit lead of Ginebra to just six points behind the three-point shooting of Peter June Simon and Paul Lee but the “Never-Say-Die” squad knows how to find ways to pull back the momentum back to their side.
Ian Sangalan had a career-high performance with his 25 points and 11 rebounds. Paul Lee who just had his second career-high in scoring versus the Alaska Aces last week chipped in 16 points and three steals.
Ginebra vs Magnolia Box Score
GINEBRA 89 – Slaughter 24, Tenorio 15, Aguilar 12, Cruz 12, Ferrer 7, Caguioa 7, Thompson 6, Mariano 4, Taha 2
MAGNOLIA 78 – Sangalang 25, Lee 16, Simon 15, Pingris 6, Barroca 4, dela Rosa 4, Gamalinda 4, Herndon 2, Melton 2