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PBA: Brownlee, Ginebra escape gallant Terrafirma, secure top four

ANTIPOLO – Ginebra escaped the also-ran yet upset-hungry Terrafirma, 109-104, to secure a coveted twice-to-beat advantage for the 2023 PBA Governors’ Cup quarterfinals, Wednesday night at the Ynares Center here.

Jamie Malonzo nailed the exclamation point through a jam with 13.1 seconds left, preserving the efforts of Nards Pinto and Justin Brownlee in putting the Kings up after the Dyip tied it up at 102-all with under three minutes to go.

The reigning champions won their fifth straight to improve to 8-2, jumping to solo second behind the 8-1 TNT, whom they can oust from the no. 1 seed in their faceoff on March 17 in the last game of the elimination round.

“That’s what we’ve been working for the whole conference,” said head coach Tim Cone of earning the aforementioned playoff incentive.

Brownlee led Ginebra with 38 points — his conference second-best — on top of three rebounds, six assists, and a game-high five blocks.

His last points of the match, a lay-up off an aggressive drive, not only served as his response to counterpart Jordan Williams’ tough bucket on the other end but also gave them a 107-104 lead with 1:01 remaining on the clock.

Then came the Malonzo slam after blowing by Andreas Cahilig to seal the deal. All in all, it was a 7-2 run for Cone’s wards to end the game, a rally sparked by the tie-breaking three-pointer of Pinto approaching the last two minutes.

“Way too many tough moments out there,” said Cone as his team actually trailed by five early in the game. “They [Terrafirma] shot the ball extremely well, they all stepped up … We just had to really reach deep, and find a way.”

Christian Standhardinger had 23 points, 12 rebounds, and six assists, while Malonzo supplied 16 and 13 as the four starters did much of the damage.

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Williams, meanwhile, had 35 points and 10 rebounds for Terrafirma, who finished its campaign with a 2-9 record.

The Scores:

Ginebra 109 – Brownlee 38, Standhardinger 23, Malonzo 16, Thompson 13, Pinto 9, Gray 7, Pringle 3.

Terrafirma 104 – J. Williams 35, Tiongson 18, Camson 11, Gomez de Liano 8, Calvo 7, Cahilig 7, Mina 7, Daquioag 3, Cabagnot 3, Ramos 3, Gabayni 2, Ferrer 0, Alolino 0.

Quarterscores: 26-24, 52-48, 78-79, 109-104

The second game of each PBA gameday is live-streamed on SMART Sports.

Written By

Oftentimes on the sidelines. Forever a student of the game. Morayta-bred.

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