Ginebra learns its lesson as it fails to pounce on late-game Magnolia errors
It only took a minute and 44 seconds for Barangay Ginebra’s three-peat hopes to disintegrate into fine powder.
The Gin Kings were holding on to a 106-101 lead with that little time remaining against Magnolia in the PBA Governors’ Cup semifinals Friday at Ynares Center.
And then disaster struck when the Hotshots went on an inspired 11-2 game-closing run to take the win, 112-108, and the series in four advancing to the championship round for the second time this season.
Ginebra point guard LA Tenorio said they don’t have the power to turn back time and try to change everything in favor and all they can do is learn from their mistake and take that lesson into the next season.
“We can’t go back to what happened, we just have to learn from it and see what’ll happen next season,” said Tenorio.
What made the pain a little harder to bear for the Gin Kings was the game was almost theirs for the taking with nearly every break going their way.
Magnolia head coach Chito Victolero was even called with a technical foul after he berated the referees for missed goaltending call on Justin Brownlee’s block on Paul Lee’s layup attempt with a little more than two minutes left in the game.
Had referees called a goaltending violation on Brownlee, the Hotshots could’ve tied the game at 103. Instead, the Gin Kings took a 104-101 lead after Tenorio’s technical free throw.
There was also the controversial tip-in Japeth Aguilar made after Tenorio’s missed layup, the ball looked to be above the cylinder when the follow-up happened, with 3:08 remaining that gave the Gin Kings a 101-99 lead.
Tenorio said it was their mistake that they couldn’t take advantage of the late-game errors of Magnolia and that the Hotshots were the ones who showed the resolve in coming through in the clutch.
“It’s on us, we didn’t take advantage of that and they [the Hotshots] were the ones who made the most out of it,” said Tenorio who had 12 points, four rebounds, and three assists.
“There’s nothing to regret in this season and we had one championship [Commissioner’s Cup] and we did what we’re supposed to do, we just came up short.”
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.