Epic Christmas Manila Clasico - Ginebra Beat Star

LA Tenorio nailed the buzzer-beating triple and Barangay Ginebra stunned Star, 92-89, Friday night in overtime to advance into the next phase of the 2016 Smart Bro PBA Philippine Cup quarterfinals before a record crowd at Mall of Asia Arena. The Hotshots had another chance to win it in regulation but it seemed like déjà vu as Yap lost the ball and Mercado raced to the other end for a potential game-winning layup but the shot, shockingly, bounced off as the buzzer sounded. The overtime was like a prizefight with both teams exchanging big shot after big shot. Barroca got things started with a triple but Tenorio responded with the same on the other end on the very next possession, 83-all.

The Star point guard added another trey for good measure but Ginebra had an answer yet again, this time from Mercado, who hit his third triple of the game, 86-apiece. It was Mallari’s turn to make a big play, connecting from beyond the arc but unbelievably, Mercado had another clutch shot in him, tying the game with his fourth three-pointer of the game, 89-all. Tenorio then finished things off with the game-winner. Ginebra made an incredible 18-point comeback in the fourth quarter to force and extra period before Tenorio stunned Star in the overtime with a game-winning three-pointer right at the final buzzer. The Kings advanced to the next round of SMART BRO PBA Philippine Cup quarterfinals, where they will take on the GlobalPort Batang Pier in a knockout for a semifinals seat. The Hotshots, meanwhile, were eliminated from the playoffs with the loss. Sol Mercado had 17 points, six rebounds and five assists for Ginebra. He hit four three-pointers all of them in the last 30 seconds of regulation or in overtime.

The scores:

GINEBRA 92 - Mercado 17, Slaughter 12, Tenorio 11, Caguioa 10, Devance 10, Aguilar 9, Ellis 9, Thompson 9, Helterbrand 3, Cruz 2, Marcelo 0.

STAR 89 - Simon 17, Sangalang 13, Barroca 11, Yap 10, Maliksi 9, Mallari 9, Melton 7, Reavis 4, Taha 4, Cruz 3, Pingris 2, Pascual J. 0, Torres 0.

Quarters: 21-18, 38-37, 54-62, 80-80, 92-89
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