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Old 04-20-2007, 08:27 AM   #23
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Default Re: Philippine Basketball Association Thread


Nealy registers triple double, outplays new Tigers import

Friday, 20 April 2007

Coach Jong Uichico didn't take a while to respond when asked what keeps Barangay Ginebra's streak going.

"I think were playing efficient basketball and improving on things that we do good already," he said point blank.

There's no doubt the Kings looked on top of their game in a 105-93 victory over the Coca-Cola Tigers in their rematch Friday night at the Araneta Coliseum.

The game was practically a mismatch with Rod Nealy providing the only highlight of contest by turning a triple-double performance that hung in the balance until he cornered a defensive rebound his 10 th -- off a missed free throw by new Coca-Cola import Jeff Varem with 23 seconds remaining.

When the final buzzer had sounded, Nealy tallied 32 points on a 12-of-26 shooting, had 12 rebounds and 11 assists to lead an amazing performance by the Kings, who won their fourth consecutive game and earned a piece of the lead in the Talk N Text-PBA Fiesta Conference.

"Everyone is focused on what we're trying to achieve. They're playing their guts out and playing their hearts out," Uichico observed of his players.

"I think the players know that we can't make so many mistakes because we can't make up for it on the offensive end unlike when Mark (Caguioa) and Jayjay (Helterbrand) were around," he added.

Four other Kings scored in double figures with Ronald Tubid contributing 17 points and Billy Mamaril adding 16 off the bench, his best game this season. Egay Echavez added 14 points on a 5-of-6 shooting also a season-high -- and Jec Chia, another reserve, had 10 for the Ginebra which improved to an 8-2 (win-loss) record to tie Red Bull on top of the standings.

Ginebra scored the game's first nine points but Coca-Cola quickly responded with a 17-4 run to grab a four-point lead.

But the Tigers didn't enjoy the lead long enough.

In a span of 3:30 minutes, the Kings behind the six points of Mamaril completed a 10-to-nothing run to pull ahead before ending the first quarter with 25-19 lead which they never relinquished the rest of the way.

John Arigo led Coca-Cola with 24 points but he didn't get any support from his teammates when he tried to rally the Tigers in the fourth quarter.

Varem, who replaced the hurting Anthony Johnson, appeared to be a sound defensive player. He scored 16 points and had 13 rebounds but apparently was still working his way to the team's system.

Ali Peek tallied 15 points but had to sit out the remaining eight minutes of the third after picking up his fifth foul.

With Peek on the bench, the Kings took the opportunity and dominated the poor shooting Tigers, who picked up their sixth loss in 10 games.

Ginebra shot 55 percent from the field compared to Coca-Cola's 43 percent shooting and the Kings outrebounded the Tigers, 47-38.

The Kings also beat the Tigers in their first meeting 101-97 last March 22. (DBC)

The scores:

Barangay Ginebra 105 Nealy 32, Tubid 17, Mamaril 16, Echavez 14, Chia 10, Salvacion 7, Santos 5, Macapagal 2, Seigle 2, Holper 0.

Coca-Cola 93 Arigo 24, Varem 16, Peek 15, Cabagnot 11, Avenido 10, Calimag 6, Tolomia 5, Antonio 5, Duremdes 1, Misolas 0.

Quarterscores: 25-19, 55-44, 80-68, 105-93.
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