By El Amigo
MANILA, Philippines – On a night where it mattered most, Japeth Aguilar banged in 25 points even as Barangay Ginebra banked on a strong third canto on the way to besting Meralco, 105-93, and grabbing the 2019 PBA Governors’ Cup title at Mall of Asia Arena on Friday night.
It was the third Governors’ Cup title in four years for Justin Brownlee and the rest of Barangay Ginebra all at the expense of coach Norman Black and Meralco and 12th overall for the league’s most popular franchise.
But it was not a walk in the park for Ginebra which lagged as much as 14 points behind in the first half.
The Gin Kings, however, wake up in time and they came alive after the break or at the third canto en route wrapping up their best-of-7 title series in 5 games.
Brownlee finished with 24 points, 10 assists and 7 rebounds while Stanley Pringle had 17 points and 8 assists in his first PBA championship.
All Ginebra starters finished in double-digit scoring.
On the other hand, Scottie Thompson scored 14 points and 6 assists, while LA Tenorio added 12 points.
In all, Ginebra finished with 33 assists on 40 field goals.
Intending to extending the series some more, Meralco was actually in control early on.
It led by as many as 14 points, 39-25, before Ginebra closed in at 40-34 at halftime.
Behind by six, 59-53 in the third, Ginebra uncorked a searing 15-3 run and wrested the lead 68-62 with 1:22 left in the quarter.
Still, Meralco refused to budge and held on some more amid the din of a boisterous pro-Ginebra crowd.
Meralco’s Bong Quinto made it 86-84 with 5:47 left in the game but then Ginebra unloaded anew a 13-2 blast to erect a comfortable 99-86 lead on the way to putting an end to the best of seven title series.
Allen Durham topscored for Meralco with 29 points and 21 rebounds playing 48 minutes. (IAMIGO/Currentph.com)