MANILA, Philippines — Petron Blaze drew strong efforts from its locals to upend Barangay Ginebra San Miguel, 101-95, in the 38th PBA Governors’ Cup Sunday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Marcio Lassiter scored eight of his 23 points in the fourth quarter while newly acquired big man Doug Kramer contributed a double-double with 17 points and 10 rebounds. Starting point guard Alex Cabagnot added 18 points.
“The players played well defensively. I think that was the key for us in this victory. We played really well in the defensive end. Slowly we’re trying to build the system we want to instill with the players,” said Petron coach Gee Abanilla, whose team bounced back from a loss to Meralco last Friday.
“Also, Doug (Kramer) played good defense against Lowhorn. Lowhorn is really a big boy inside. He can really post up inside. We had a tough time against him,” added Abanilla.
Petron import Elijah Millsap had a team-high 24 points but only managed to score a point in the final period on a free throw for a 94-93 Boosters lead with 2:12 left.
Kramer, who missed only two of his nine attempts from the field, converted on a putback off a miss by Millsap to make it, 98-93, before a three-point play by Lassister sealed the game, 101-93, with only 1:20 remaining.
Stocky import Dior Lowhorn topscored with 29 points to go along with 11 rebounds for the Gin Kings, who dropped their first game of the conference.
Ginebra trailed by 10, 69-79, late in the third quarter before its familiar never-say-die mantra willed the Gin Kings back and even take an 87-85 edge after a three-point play by Lowhorn with 5:23 to go.
But Cabagnot drilled in a left corner triple despite being fouled by LA Tenorio before hitting the bonus free throw to put Petron back on top, 89-87.
Mark Caguioa added 15 points while LA Tenorio had nine points on a tough shooting night on top of 10 assists.