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PBA: Luck on side of Ginebra in win over Blackwater

Luck favored Ginebra over Blackwater in overtime, 81-80, in a PBA On Tour thriller, Wednesday night at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig.

The Kings faced disaster when Jeremiah Gray inadvertently fouled Tyrus Hill with only half a second left to play, but breathed a huge sigh of relief moments later as the young forward failed to convert both of his free throws.

His misses also saved the efforts of Sidney Onwubere, who led the crowd darlings with 25 points and 11 rebounds in a showing. The highlight was his clean-up job on Nards Pinto’s miss for the go-ahead bucket with 43.5 seconds to go.

“It was a character win for the boys dahil we were coming off a tough loss,” said lead assistant coach Richard Del Rosario, referring to their 101-95 defeat to Fran Yu and NorthPort just last Saturday in Batangas.

Gray finished with 22 points, eight rebounds, and five assists, while Pinto supplied 13 markers in the victory that hiked GInebra’s card to 2-3.

Pinto himself was responsible for sending the game into an extra period, converting a tough lay-up to tie the game up at 77-all with 1.2 seconds left.

“Even when we were missing shots sa endgame, ‘di pa rin sila nag-give up. So maganda ‘yung character na pinakita ng mga players and I hope ‘yung Ginebra fans are proud na naipakita ‘yung Never Say Die spirit,” Del Rosario said.

James Sena, on the other hand, led the Bossing with 18 points and seven rebounds. Troy Rosario backed him up with 12 markers and 11 boards.

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Rosario was supposed to be the hero for his side when he hit the go-ahead layup for the 77-75 lead with 15.2 seconds left in regulation. But then Pinto negated such by nailing the game-tying bucket seconds later.

Rosario had also given Blackwater an 80-77 lead following a split from the line with 2:34 remaining in OT. However, free throws by Von Pessumal plus the clutch bucket by Onwubere wiped out their narrow advantage.

RK Ilagan and Rashawn McCarthy finished with 10 points each in the loss, which is now their third in six outings in the preseason tilt.

The Scores:

Ginebra 81 – Onwubere 25, Gray 22, Pinto 13, Mariano 9, R.Aguilar 8, David 2, Pessumal 2, Dillinger 0, Salcedo 0, Cu 0, Gumaru 0, Aurin 0

Blackwater 80 – Sena 18, Rosario 12, Ilagan 10, McCarthy 10, DiGregorio 9, Casio 9, Ular 7, Hill 4, Suerte 1, Escoto 0, Ayonayon 0, Publico 0, Banal 0

Quarterscores: 29-17, 47-38, 59-61, 77-77, 81-80.

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