Justin Brownlee dropped a new career-high 49 points to power Barangay Ginebra past Magnolia in another chapter to the Manila Clasico rivalry, 102-81, in the 2019 PBA Commissioner’s Cup Sunday night at a packed SMART Araneta Coliseum.
The conference’s reigning Best Import was responsible in the Gin Kings’ 23-4 scoring spree in the third quarter, where they climbed back from a slim three-point deficit and made it a huge 78-62 advantage in their favor.
And when the Hotshots came close by nine twice in the final frame, Brownlee scored six straight to make it 90-75 with 4:19 left. Ginebra would never allow Magnolia to get near since, and they would lead by as many as 23, 102-79.
Brownlee shot an excellent 75 percent from the field and also had 20 rebounds, seven assists, two steals, and a block.
“What can you say about Justin? I mean, if that’s not an MJ performance tonight, I’ve never seen an MJ performance,” said Ginebra head coach Tim Cone, singing high praises to his prized import. “It’s really an amazing play by him.”
Japeth Aguilar produced 18 points on 9-of-13 shooting, nine rebounds, three blocks, and a steal for Ginebra.
Stanley Pringle had his first taste of a Manila Clasico and he made sure his presence would be felt as he had 13 points, five assists, four steals, a rebound, and a block. LA Tenorio chimed in 12 markers built on three triples.
With the win, the defending champions have now earned themselves an outright passage in the quarterfinals. They have now clinched their 36th straight conference playoffs berth, per the league’s stats chief Fidel Mangonon III.
Import James Farr produced a PBA career-high 34 points, along with 21 rebounds, three blocks, two assists, and a steal to lead Magnolia, who actually had the upper hand early as they opened the match with 10 straight points.
Mark Barroca had 16 points, five assists, and three rebounds, as Ian Sangalang had 12 and seven boards.
The blowout loss marked the Hotshots’ second straight after being one hot squad with five consecutive victories. Magnolia now sits at the fifth spot of the team standings with a 5-4 win-loss record after the defeat.
Ginebra will look to improve their seeding for the playoffs when they take on Columbian next Sunday, July 14, while Magnolia will try to snap their funk versus Rain or Shine this Wednesday, July 10. Games are still at the Big Dome.
Ginebra 102 – Brownlee 49, Aguilar 18, Pringle 13, Tenorio 12, Thompson 5, Slaughter 2, Mariano 2, Caguioa 1, Caperal 0, Devance 0.
Mqgnolia 81 – Farr 34, Barroca 16, Sangalang 14, Jalalon 8, Lee 5, Brondial 4, Melton 0, Herndon 0, Pingris 0.
Quarterscores: 18-23, 46-47, 78-64, 102-81.