LUCENA CITY - A change in scenery has done wonders for Barangay Ginebra.
Its hopes for a place in the PBA Commissioner's Cup hanging in the balance, Ginebra came out with all guns blazing to deal GlobalPort a 96-81 defeat on Saturday before a packed crowd at the Quezon Convention Center.
Michael Dunigan scored 22 points for the Kings, who rode a quick-fire start sparked by veteran Mark Caguioa and had no difficulty finding people to step up in the course of a win that snapped a two-game losing streak.
Caguioa lived up to his 'Spark' moniker by dropping 11 of his 16 points in the first half, staking the Gin Kings to a 46-27 halftime lead that held for the rest of the match.
LA Tenorio, Greg Slaughter and even rarely used guard Josh Urbiztondo also had big games for the Kings, who moved up to solo sixth spot - and inside the magic eight that will make the quarterfinals - with a 5-5 (win-loss) record.
In contrast, GlobalPort slipped to 4-6 in a tie for the seventh to 10th spots with Alaska, Barako Bull, and KIA Motors after suffering a third successive loss in the absence of injured top rookie Stanley Pringle.
Pringle has been sidelined by an ankle sprain.
Compounding GlobalPort’s woes were the three quick fouls of import Derrick Caracter early in the first half, leaving the charges of coach Eric Gonzales without an inside threat.
GlobalPort tries to salvage its confernce with a win on Tuesday against San Miguel Beer, though the quotient will be applied to break multiple ties to determine which teams will qualify in the top eight.
Slaughter came off the bench to score 22 points and six rebounds while Urbiztondo added 11, spiked by three three-pointers. Dunigan added 16 rebounds and five blocks.
Terrence Romeo led the skidding GlobalPort squad with 20 points, with Caracter winding up with 16 and nine boards.