BARANGAY Ginebra made sure to protect a huge lead this time as it vented its ire on Kia, 103-77, to regain its winning ways in the PBA Philippine Cup on Wednesday night at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Coming off an 81-78 loss to NLEX in a game where they gave up a 14-point third-quarter lead, the Gin Kings built another early cushion that ballooned in the second quarter, then held on to it until the final buzzer.
Greg Slaughter dominated the paint, while Scottie Thompson flirted with a triple-double as the Gin Kings improved to a 4-4 win-loss record and handed the Picanto their seventh loss in eight games.
“It has been a struggle for us, but hopefully this is the game that turns us around,” Gin Kings coach Tim Cone said.
“We're getting a little healthier. We're getting on the same page and starting to adjust on the new way the game is being played and called,” he added.
Slaughter showed he’s back in top shape in his second game back from a hamstring injury as he pumped in 14 points – although struggling with his shot with a 4-of-12 clip from the field, eight boards, and three assists in 26 minutes as a starter, while LA Tenorio and Japeth Aguilar added 13 points apiece.
Thompson scattered 12 points, 14 rebounds, seven assists, and one steal in 32 minutes, while Kevin Ferrer was the other Ginebra player who scored in double digits with 10 markers.
Jett Manuel also made the most of his pro debut, chipping in eight points, including one triple, two assists, and one rebound in 12 minutes, while Paolo Taha likewise scored eight points, including two on a layup that gave the Gin Kings their biggest lead at 29 points, 82-53, early in the fourth quarter.
Rashawn McCarthy led the Picanto with a game-high 15 points, six boards, and one assist in 31 minutes that went for naught.
GIN 103 – Slaughter 14, Tenorio 13, J. Aguilar 13, Thompson 12, Ferrer 10, Taha 8, Manuel 8, Caperal 6, R. Aguilar 6, Mercado 4, Cruz 4, Jamito 3, Caguioa 2, Wilson 0
KIA 77 – McCarthy 15, Tubid 13, Corpuz 9, Reyes 8, Jamon 5, Camson 4, Sara 4, Escoto 4, Khobuntin 4, Yee 4, Lastimosa 3, Ababou 2, Galanza 2, Celda 0, Gabriel 0
Quarterscores: 25-24, 53-34, 78-52, 103-77