Manila Clasico: San Mig Coffee halts Ginebra’s run to grab first place in standings · Sunday, June 1, 2014 · 7:21 pm

PBA/Nuki Sabio
PBA/Nuki Sabio

The San Mig Super Coffee Mixers sent Barangay Ginebra San Miguel crashing back down to earth with a masterful 102-90 victory in their Manila Clasico showdown on Sunday at SMART-Araneta Coliseum.

The Mixers improved its record to 4-1 to grab first place in the PLDT Home Telpad Governors’ Cup, a half-game ahead of the Gin Kings who fell to 3-1 after their first loss of the tournament.
“We were experienced in what we do, so we tried to exploit that,” said San Mig Coffee coach Tim Cone.

Reigning Best Import Marqus Blakely cut loose for 34 points, 17 rebounds, and six steals, leading the Mixers’ onslaught in the final quarter. Peter June Simon, who was celebrating his 34th birthday, continued his hot run through the tournament with 19 points.

There was much anticipation prior to the game with Ginebra facing San Mig Coffee for the first time under coach Jeffrey Cariao, a former assistant coach with the Mixers until the start of this conference.

The game lived up to the billing in the first three quarters, with neither team allowing the other to get too far away.

It was a tight game up until the early part of the fourth period, with Mark Caguioa giving Ginebra its last taste of the lead with a tough jumper over James Yap, 79-78.

But Yap quickly went back at Caguioa drawing a foul for two free throws to give San Mig Coffee back the advantage, 80-79.

That started a 16-0 run for the Mixers, who opened up a commanding 94-79 lead.

With the Mixers turning up the heat, the Gin Kings wilted under the pressure, even as Blakely dominated his Ginebra frontline counterparts.

“We tried to hang on, then in the fourth, we took up the pressure. We kinda let the dogs out,” said Cone.

The coach also paid tribute to versatile forward Joe Devance, who facilitated the Mixers’ offense while also helping defend the Gin Kings’ tall frontcourt towers of Greg Slaughter and Japeth Aguilar.

“Special mention to Joe, he was incredible tonight. Never saw a big guy pass that well. He may not have the numbers, but he is the guy with the big story this game,” said Cone.

Import Zaccheus Mason had 18 points and 12 rebounds for Ginebra, but was a non-factor down the stretch when the Mixers made their run. Mark Caguioa added 18 points for the Gin Kings.

The scores:

SAN MIG SUPER COFFEE 102 – Blakely 34, Simon 19, Barroca 11, Maliksi 9, Devance 8, Pingris 8, Yap 8, Sangalang 4, Reavis 1, Mallari 0.

GINEBRA 90 – Mason 18, Caguioa 18, Aguilar 12, Slaughter 11, Tenorio 11, Ellis 6, Helterbrand 5, Monfort 5, Reyes 2, Mamaril 2, Baracael 0, Ababou 0.

Quarters: 26-25, 47-50, 70-70, 102-90


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