PBA: Brownlee leads Ginebra to tie series with Meralco

(UPDATED) Defending champion Barangay Ginebra survived a massive second half from Meralco to grab a 99-93 win in Game 2 of their PBA Governors’ Cup best-of-7 finals at Mall of Asia Arena on Friday.

Justin Brownlee, who finished with 36 points on 12-of-18 field goal shooting, made all the huge plays especially while the Gin Kings were hanging on to their lead in the final minutes.

The Kings built a 20-point lead in the first half but the Bolts battled back in the next two quarters and threatened to take over.

Fortunately, Brownlee came up wit a dominant performance in closing minutes and willed the Kings to victory.

He also finished with 13 rebounds and 9 assists to make up for his sub par performance in Game 1.

“It was more of a mental adjustment coming out. They came out with a little bit of fire and purpose. Really focused on the some of the little things that we played,” said Ginebra coach Tim Cone.

Scottie Thompson added 16 while LA Tenorio scored 13.

Tony Bishop tallied 31 points for Meralco, which also got 24 from Aaron Black.

The Bolts used an 11-point run in the payoff period to push the Kings back to the wall.

But Brownlee orchestrated a 8-point fightback, including a dunk to kill off Meralco’s momentum.

“We wish to hold the lead all the way through,” said Cone. “But in the finals, the team we are playing is really good. They’re good defensively, offensively they didn’t panic and we had to make some great plays.”

The Scores:

GINEBRA 99 – Brownlee 36, Thompson 16, Tenorio 13, Standhardinger 12, Pinto 10, Chan 7, Mariano 5, Salado 0, Onwubere 0, Devance 0, Ayaay 0

MERALCO 93 – Bishop 31, Black 24, Banchero 14, Newsome 7, ALmazan 6, Quinto 5, Hodge 4, Baclao 2, Belo 0, Hugnatan 0

QUARTERS: 20-23, 60-42, 82-71, 99-93

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