With 8.1 seconds left in the game, Globalport had possession and inbounded the ball to Jay Washington, who immediately handed off the ball to Stanley Pringle.
Pringle held the ball while being trapped by Ginebra defenders before passing it to Keith Jensen, who then made a forward pass to Terrence Romeo.
Time expired, allowing Globalport to escape while the Ginebra side was looking for a call as they deemed Pringle was holding the ball for too long.
“Hindi ata reviewable yun pero we were hoping for a five-second ball-hogging (call),” Ginebra assistant coach Olsen Racela said.
Head coach Tim Cone stormed the floor after the final buzzer, complaining to the referees and seeking answers. The Ginebra-side likewise stayed on the floor for quite a while before leaving the scene.
Racela added the team has not yet talked about filing a protest to the PBA. Ginebra has until 12 noon tomorrow, Monday to file a protest.
“Breaks of the game lang,” LA Tenorio explained. “Kapag na-trap, edi no foul. Eh hindi tumawag ng foul, hindi tumawag ng five seconds, so breaks of the game lang.”
Tenorio personally thinks it should have been a five-second ball-hogging violation, although he also acknowledged the match shouldn’t have gotten to that point if Ginebra did a better job in the earlier parts of the game.
“Tingin ko five seconds, dahil bilang na bilang naman. (Parang) nag-step din (si Pringle) so pwedeng backing din, Kaya lang hindi tumawag,” he said. “Sana hindi na umabot sa ganoon kung hindi dahil sa lapses.”
Under rules, players cannot hold the ball for more than five seconds without shooting, passing, or dribbling when defended closely.
Ginebra fans were furious after the replay was shown on the big screen, also thinking Pringle might have held the ball for more than five seconds. But the officials never made a call in the end game as time expired.
“Referees reviewed it and I think they made a right choice. Sometimes basketball can be a split decision. It can go either way. You can’t blame them,” Pringle said, adding he felt he was fouled.
“It was really close. They trapped me and I just tried to stay strong with the ball. I definitely felt contact in the arm but it is alright, we played through it.”
Globalport advances to the semi-finals for the first time in franchise history. The Batang Pier will face the Alaska Aces.