SMB holds off Ginebra in OT; TNT zooms back to top with win vs NLEX


MANILA — San Miguel Beermen’s Renaldo Balkman prevailed over fellow Alab Pilipinas world import Justin Brownlee in their first meeting against each other.

Balkman’s team, however, needed five more minutes to notch the win.

San Miguel turned back Barangay Ginebra, 104-97, in their PBA Commissioner’s Cup battle at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City on Sunday night.

With Alab head coach Jimmy Alapag and local ace Ray-Ray Parks in attendance, the Beermen scored their second straight win in the conference as Brownlee’s Barangay continues to struggle.

Ginebra actually had a chance to eke a win with just 3.6 seconds left in regulation with the team up, 92-91.

However, Sol Mercado missed one of the two free throws, opening an opportunity for SMB to tie the score.

Junemar Fajardo got the lucky bounce on his turnaround jumper with 1.1 seconds left that eventually forced overtime.

The Barangay still had one last crack at the win, but Balkman intercepted their inbound pass as time expired.

The Beermen then went to work in the extra session, opening with a 5-0 run while holding off the Barangay down the stretch.

Balkman, despite turning over the ball nine times, led SMB with 27 points, 11 rebounds, three assists, three blocks, and one steal.

Fajardo added 24 points, 19 rebounds, two assists, one block, and one steal, while Arwind Santos, who made crucial shots down the stretch, chipped in 19 markers, eight boards, one assist, one steal, and a block.

Brownlee struggled all game long, only making 7-of-27 field goals for 18 points, although he also had 14 rebounds, seven assists, five blocks, and three steals.

In the first game, TNT KaTropa dropped 45 points in the first quarter before holding off NLEX Road Warriors, 117-106.

Joshua Smith tallied 24 points on 9-of-10 shooting, 13 rebounds, five assists, and two blocks for the KaTropa, who rejoined the Rain Or Shine Elasto Painters at the top of the standings at 6-1.

Anthony Semerad added 22 points on 8-of-13 shooting with one rebound, while Terrence Romeo fired 19 points, two rebounds, and eight assists.

Arnett Moultrie made 31 markers, 14 rebounds, two assists, and one block for the Road Warriors, who slipped to 2-5.

The scores:

First Game 

TNT 117 – Smith 24, Semerad 22, Romeo 19, Cruz 12, Pogoy 11, Castro 10, Rosario 6, Williams 5, Golla 3, Trollano 3, Garcia 2, Reyes 0, Carey 0, Paredes 0.

NLEX 106 – Moultrie 31, Mallari 15, Fonacier 14, Ighalo 11, Quinahan 9, Taulava 6, Miranda 4, Marcelo 3, Rios 2, Soyud 2, Baguio 2, Monfort 0, Uyloan 0.

Quarters: 45-30, 63-56, 89-82, 117-106. 

Second Game

San Miguel 104 – Balkman 27, Fajardo 24, Santos 19, Lassiter 11, Ross 10, Cabagnot 9, Mamaril 4, Rosser 0.

Ginebra 97 – Brownlee 18, Aguilar 17, Devance 15, Thompson 13, Cruz 10, Slaughter 9, Mercado 8, Tenorio 7.

Quarters: 23-20, 47-43, 71-73, 93-93, 104-97.