Import Justin Brownlee dropped a conference-high 39 points with 16 rebounds and Barangay Ginebra San Miguel sank the San Miguel Beermen, 115-108, for an early 1-0 lead during the best-of-5 semifinals in the 2016 PBA Governors’ Cup on Monday, September 26, at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The Gin Kings also had plenty of local heroes in the exciting, fast-paced game with Japeth Aguilar contributing 22 points, 7 rebounds, and 3 blocks. Sol Mercado had a 19-point output off the bench, including the triple that gave his team a 6-point cushion after San Miguel cut the once 12-point lead down to 3 nearing the final two minutes.
Joe Devance added 12 points and 7 boards as Scottie Thompson created for Ginebra in the final frame, with his unselfish play that led to Mark Caguioa scoring all 8 of his points off of Thompson finding him beneath the ring during that stretch.
On one of those good finds, Thompson dropped a no-look pass to the waiting Caguioa and Ginebra established a 92-80 advantage with 8:39 to go. The rookie guard finished with 11 points, 10 rebounds, and 6 assists.
But it was Brownlee who led Ginebra’s fourth quarter scoring surge with 9 points to stave off the hot-shooting San Miguel. His huge 3-point play with 1:21 remaining put the Gin Kings safely ahead by 111-102 as they completed a comeback from a 26-39 deficit in the second quarter.