Barangay Ginebra squandered a 19-point halftime lead but managed to hold off a resurgent Alaska Aces quintet to notch their first win of the Smart Bro PBA Philippine Cup, 93-92, at the Al Wasl Sports Club in Dubai.
The Aces stepped up their defense in the second half, limiting the Kings to 19 points each for the third and fourth quarter as they chopped down the halftime deficit.
The Aces had actually wrested the lead from the Gin Kings in the last few seconds courtesy of a bank shot by Vic Manuel, 92-91.
On the return play, Greg Slaughter drew a foul from Nonoy Baclao and the Kings center made good on his two free throws with about 4 seconds remaining to return the lead back to Barangay Ginebra, 93-92.
After a timeout, the Aces had a chance to try and win the game but Manuel’s attempt bounced off the ring as time expired.
It was the first win for Barangay Ginebra the conference while the Aces suffered their first loss.
The Aces had hoped to make it back-to-back in Dubai after defeating the Mahindra Enforcers Friday, 98-94.