The San Miguel Beermen beat sister team Barangay Ginebra San Miguel on Sunday’s quadruple-header finale, 81-66. They snapped a two-game skid and improved to 6-5 in the standings.
The Beermen simply went on the attack right from the tip and were in control for much of the ball game. They jumped into a 17-point cushion heading into break so despite a rough third quarter, they remained in comfortable and cruised into the W.
Mo Tautuaa (20 pts, 11 rebs) and Chris Ross (11 pts, 14 rebs, 4 stls) led the way as each recorded a double-double.
As evident in the score, it was not a pretty game. But, of course, as we always say, “a win is a win.” We can also expect the SMB to keep playing with a ton of urgency moving forward. They’re champions with a lot of pride, so they won’t be satisfied with just roaming in the middle.
Ginebra, on the other hand, failed to lock the number one seed for the playoffs and dropped to 7-3. The loss had them reverting back into a tie with Talk N’ Text Tropang Giga for the top spot in the conference. It also brought the team’s three-game winning streak into a screeching halt.
Head coach Tim Cone and the rabid ‘Barangay’ nation, however, may be secretly pleased as Ginebra has had a string of terrible postseason luck whenever entering as the first seed. Also, the probable #1 vs. #8 match-up isn’t exactly set-up to be a walk in the park for the eventual #1.
Whichever it may be, the Gin Kings simply had a horrific outing. They shot a season-low 30% (25-for-81), thanks in good part to playing lazy and inexplicably relying too much on threes despite consistently bricking. They finished 4-for-31 from beyond the arc.
The crappy effort was seen everywhere, and Cone may have opted to limit the minutes of his key guys, with Japeth Agular, Prince Caperal, and leading scorer Stanley Pringle all playing less than 19 minutes each.
Pringle looked lethargic too as he only scored seven points on 3-for-10 shooting with four turnovers. LA Tenorio, meanwhile, showcased what could possibly the worst performance of his career as he posted 0 points and 0 assists in 26 minutes – he missed all of his six shots.
The lone bright spot was Scottie Thompson, who was stuffed the stat sheet yet again by flirting with a triple-double: 12 points, 9 rebounds, and 10 assists.
Is this a cause for concern for the playoffs?
It was frustrating to see Ginebra get pounded in a game where they were supposed to be flexing their muscles for the number one seed. However, a deep roster with legendary coach is never to be doubted. Ginebra should be fine moving forward whether they meet a formidable quarterfinals foe or not.
Barangay Ginebra will be on the court again tomorrow. They’ll meet the last-placed Terrafirma Dyip at 6:45 PM.