FINALS: Powerade Tigers 1 - 3 Talk N Text Tropang Texters
Published on November 23, 2011

Brgy. Ginebra knows it can beat its opponents with lights-out shooting. It can play tough defense too. 

On this particular night, both facets of the Kings' game aligned which proved enough to thwart an attempt by the Alaska Aces to turn the game around for an 85-77 victory that kept the former back on track in the PBA Philippine Cup at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum Wednesday. 

Nino Canaleta provided both X factors by scattering four triples to finish with a game-high 21 points while coming through with enough defense on the other end courtesy of a team-high eight rebounds and a block to lead the most popular ballclub in the land to its fifth victory in as many losses.

And it happened to be the long-limbed, high-flying and sweet-shooting Canaleta's best game in Brgy. Ginebra uniform since he was traded by his old team B-Meg in the middle of the Governor's Cup a conference ago. 

That's why Brgy. Ginebra coach Bethune "Siot" Tanquincen is all praises for his agile, do-it-all wingman. 

"He played big for us especially his ability to spread the floor and at the same time and play as added rebounder because he's really long," saidTanquincen during the mandatory post-game interview. 

"Its a luxury to have somebody who can shoot that well at the same time help us in rebound," he added. Acquired by the Kings from Air21 (now Barako Bull) prior to the 2011 Governors Cup playoffs in exchange for Willie Miller, Canaleta was also the Best Player of the Game with his 17 points and seven rebounds when the Kings won their first meeting 83-72 against Alaska last October 9. 

At the end of their second meeting, the Kings torched the Aces with 11 triples including six by the exciting guard troika of Mike Cortez, JC Intal and Jayjay Helterbrand, who went on to score 13, 12 and 10 markers, respectively. 

Barangay Ginebra also took Alaska out of its comfort zone after the former limited the latter to its lowest output in a three-game span following wins over Powerade, 121-111, last Nov. 18 and, 86-80, two days later. 

"That's really our target, to play better defense, more than anything else," said Tanquincen. Alaska had six players scoring in double figure including a team-high 13 by Sonny Thoss but had no answer to Ginebra's solid defense and superb outside sniping. 

The loss thus sent the Aces, who controlled the pace in the first half with its bullish game inside, from a share of eighth spot with the idle Powerade Tigers (3-7) to ninth place on a 3-8 record and in danger of missing the playoffs for the first time since the 2009 Fiesta Conference. (JV) 

The scores: 

BARANGAY GINEBRA 85 - Canaleta 21, Cortez 13, Intal 12, Helterbrand 10, Mamaril 9, Villanueva 7, Caguioa 7, Wilson J. 2, Wilson W. 2, Tubid 2. 

ALASKA 77 - Thoss 13, Custodio 12, Reyes 11, Baguio 11, Dela Cruz 11, Tenorio 10, Baracael 5, Eman 2, Bugia 2, Salamat 0. 

Quarterscores: 21-23, 42-46, 66-65, 85-77


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