PBA: Tim Cone extremely proud of Gilas trio for helping Ginebra in latest win
MANILA, Philippines—Ginebra coach Tim Cone praised three of his players who were part of the Gilas Pilipinas roster for also giving it all in the Gin Kings’ 112-107 win over Meralco in the PBA Governors’ Cup tournament on Wednesday.
Jamie Malonzo, Scottie Thompson and Justin Brownlee, who all played for the national team in a couple of Fiba World Cup Asian Qualifying Games a few days ago, remained true to their job and still played for the Gin Kings.
“I’m super proud of Justin, Scottie and Jamie for coming out and playing with effort and all the minutes they played,” said Cone at Araneta Coliseum.
“I can’t be more proud of the three of those guys tonight for reaching deep and leading the team [to the win].”
Despite having to endure a pressure-packed week with the national team, Cone’s troika played like they had fresh legs all throughout their encounter with the Bolts.
Thompson, Brownlee and Malonzo were also starters for the Gin Kings, playing 41, 44 and 35 minutes, respectively.
Thompson finished with only seven points but dropped 10 assists in the process. Brownlee, on the other hand, remained a force following a 41-point performance against Jordan on Monday. He finished with 29 markers, seven rebounds and six assists for Ginebra.
Malonzo, who played the role of closer in the fourth quarter alongside Jeremiah Gray, finished with 16 markers, including an exclamation point of a dunk to keep the Bolts at bay.
EVERYBODY STEPPING UP
It was no secret that Cone’s valuable three were dealing with fatigue, so it was vital for the Gin Kings to scramble their lineup to find players who will step up during the trio’s breathers.
Enter Gray, Nards Pinto and Player of the Game Christian Stanhardinger.
“Nards, Miah, Christian, those are really our three key guys who played tonight and played well,” proclaimed Cone.
Pinto served as Thompson’s breather in the point guard position to finish with 12 markers and seven dimes while Gray showed up to be Ginebra’s important scorer in the payoff period.
Gray tallied 12 to his name, including a couple of shots beyond the arc that would put the Gin Kings in winning position.
Standhardinger, however, was arguably the biggest piece in Ginebra’s hard-fought win after ending with a monster double-double of 31 markers, 10 boards and seven assists.
“First of all, I’m so amazed with Justin. I expected him to do what he did but looking at Miah and coming out there, he struggled a little bit in the first half but it’s amazing to see a young gun like him score like he did in the fourth quarter,” told the Commissioners’ Cup Finals MVP.
“[I’m] happy to have them as my teammates.”
Ginebra tightened its hold of the third seed with a 5-2 record, just behind TNT and San Miguel, which are both in Japan as of writing for the East Asia Super League tournament.
Up next for the Gin Kings is Phoenix on Friday at the same venue. The Fuel Masters also won in Wednesday’s first game against short-handed Rain or Shine.