JERICHO Cruz sank a triple as NLEX completed its comeback from 28 points down to beat Barangay Ginebra, 113-111, on Saturday in the PBA Governors’ Cup at the Coca Cola Arena in Dubai.
Cruz hit the go-ahead three with 20 seconds left in overtime as the Road Warriors stunned the Gin Kings through a come-from-behind win.
Kiefer Ravena sent the game into overtime with a buzzer-beating three, giving the Road Warriors a chance to steal the victory from the Gin Kings.
With the victory, NLEX salvaged its campaign in Dubai by splitting its games in back-to-back days. The Road Warriors lost to San Miguel on Friday.
The Road Warriors also improved to 4-1 before heading back to the Philippines for the rest of their Governors' Cup campaign.
The loss spoiled Justin Brownlee’s effort after the Barangay Ginebra import hit a triple-double and finished with 42 points, 20 rebounds, and 10 assists.
The Kings lost in stunning fashion, falling to 1-2 and bowing for the second straight time.
Things looked bleak for the Road Warriors after a Stanley Pringle three put the Kings up, 69-41, early in the third quarter. But NLEX slashed it to half, 86-72, entering the fourth.
NLEX was still down by six, but Philip Paniamogan and Poy Erram buried back-to-back threes to tie the game at 100.
Brownlee converted two free throws to regain the lead but Ginebra missed a chance to put the game away after Japeth Aguilar split his two free throws, setting up Ravena’s heroics.
In overtime, Ginebra was once again ahead, 111-107, but NLEX hit back-to-back threes again thanks to Paniamogan and Cruz, whose triple allowed the Road Warriors to seize the lead.
The Gin Kings were unable to tie the game after numerous shots from close range failed to connect, and the Road Warriors grabbed the rebound with only 0.9 seconds on the clock.
Olu Ashaolu had 25 points, while Erram and Paniamogan had 21 and 20 each. Ravena had 13 points, seven rebounds, and 17 assists in a double-double effort.
Greg Slaughter and Stanley Pringle had 19 each for the Gin Kings.
NLEX 113 – Ashaolu 25, Erram 21, Paniamogan 20, Cruz 13, Ravena 13, Quinahan 9, Ighalo 5, Varilla 3, Galanza 2, Fonacier 2, Taulava 0, Miranda 0.
Barangay Ginebra 111 – Brownlee 42, Slaughter 19, Pringle 19, Tenorio 12, J. Aguilar 9, Caguioa 4, Dela Cruz 4, Thompson 2, Caperal 0.
Quarters: 22-29; 39-59; 72-86; 103-103; 113-111.