MANILA -- Barangay Ginebra ruined Christmas for a resurgent Magnolia squad, 89-78, in their "Manila Clasico" at the Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan to register their first victory in the PBA Philippine Cup.
Back-to-back threes brought the Hotshots to within six points late in the fourth, but the Gin Kings would have none of it as they closed out the game and won their first assignment this season.
Greg Slaughter was unstoppable under the paint with 24 points and 12 rebounds, while LA Tenorio had 15 markers.
Jervy Cruz and Japeth Aguilar also had a productive night with 12 points each while dishing out Magnolia's first defeat in two games.
Ian Sangalang registered a career-high 25 points for Magnolia, which simply had no answer for Ginebra's taller frontline.
"I was surprised with how we played. We weren't perfect out there but we played with really good energy and I thought we wouldn't be able to do that with distractions and Christmas. The fact that we have some injuries and Purefoods has always been a huge thorn for us, we know they wanted to beat us badly," said Ginebra coach Tim Cone in the post-game presser.
Cone was also glad that the Kings didn't show a hint of a championship hangover after their Governors' Cup win.
"Usually we don't play well coming off a championship, it was like perfect storm for us to get beat tonight. But our guys figured out a way. Greg was absolutely dominant tonight," he said.
Last year, the Gin Kings also won their "Christmas Clasico" in the same venue, 86-79.
GINEBRA 89 - Slaughter 24, Tenorio 15, Aguilar J. 12, Cruz 12, Ferrer 7, Caguioa 7, Thompson 6, Mariano 4, Taha 2, Aguilar R. 0.
MAGNOLIA 78 - Sangalang 25, Lee 16, Simon 15, Pingris 6, Barroca 4, Dela Rosa 4, Gamalinda 4, Herndon 2, Melton 2, Ramos 0, Brondial 0, Pascual 0.
Quarter scores: 22-17, 48-37, 66-60, 89-78
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