The Barangay Ginebra San Miguel knocks NLEX Road warriors on their season opener, 102-92 with help from Aljon Mariano’s 20 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists performance at PBA Bubble, UAF Sports Arena & Cultural Center, Clark, Pampanga.
The University of Sto. Thomas forward played a big night for the injured laden Kings as Lewis Alfred Tenorio, (1 point and couple of rebounds) suffers from his appendix surgery while Japeth Aguilar, (7 points, 3 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 blocks) is still recovering from an injury both a part of the main five of the Kings but is now both playing with limited minutes.
Mariano contributed in all four quarters for the first time ever “crowdless” Ginebra as they play in the PBA Bubble due to the Pandemic.
The NLEX Road Warriors fell short as their main gunner JR. Quiñahan got thrown out of the game after receiving a flagrant foul 1 after a jab to Stanley Pringle’s face for a supposedly chase down block during the first quarter and a technical foul during the third due to resentment to a call finishing with 26 points, 2 blocks, 1 steal, 1 rebound and 1 assist in only 23 minutes of playing time.
The Barangay Ginebra started the first quarter with precision as they shoot 6-of-11 from rainbow country led by Prince Caperal who started this game and shot 2-of-2 beyond the arc and finished with 11 points, 9 from the 3-point line leaving NLEX stunned, 31-22 at the end of the first.
The NLEX responded however in the second as they hold Ginebra to game low, 17 quarter points while scoring 26 on them along with Quiñahan’s relentless scoring ending the first half 48 a piece.
Ginebra went on and fire on all Cylinders as they score 35 points during the third quarter displaying balanced offense as multiple players scored.
Putting salt onto injury as Quiñahan walks off the court with a technical and 10 big points in the quarter that saw Ginebra’s lead ballooned to as high as 16 while the Road Warriors finished strong ending the quarter 83-75.
NLEX, missing Kiefer Ravena’s explosive scoring prowess who scored 6 points in 31 minutes of action and Quiñahan’s hot hands failed to rally back as they lost to Ginebra and Mariano’s consistency who shot 9 of his 20 points in the fourth giving Ginebra the W, 102-92.
Ginebra will play their next game against Blackwater Elite on October 15, Thursday while the Road Warriors looks to make things straight as they take on the Magnolia Hotshots on October 14, Wednesday.