Barangay Ginebra and Northport—all even at 1-1—try to apply more pressure on the gas pedal in crucial Game Three of the Philippine Basketball Association Governors’ Cup best-of-five semifinals on Wednesday, at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The Gin Kings returned the favor to Batang Pier in a semblance of their Game One beating last Monday to tie the series at one apiece.
Stanley Pringle scored 23 points, while LA Tenorio finally got his touches to add 20 in their huge 113-88 win over NorthPort.
Rested and both eager to move further in the tournament, the two meet again for the series edge at 7 p.m.
With barely four days to recover from the Southeast Asian Games duties, Coach Tim Cone and his boys were left flattened in a 90-124 thrashing in the semifinals opener.
Cone served as head coach, while Pringle, Japeth Aguilar, Tanorio and Greg Slaughter played under his guidance on the gold-medal winning team.
Fatigue took its toll on the Gin Kings in Game One and Cone admitted that they
lagged behind NorthPort, which also lent Christian Standhardinger to the national squad.
“We didn’t seem get to have much time to prepare,” Cone said. “We just didn’t know what to do.”
Barangay Ginebra, however, regained its groove and leaned on its hot shooting. The squad also locked down on Batang Pier import Michael Qualls, who could only perform on a one-of-10 shooting in the first half after scoring 27 in the series opener.
“We’ve recovered and battled our way through that,” Cone said.
Slaughter added 16 points in Game Two, while import Justin Brownlee registered 15.