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GLOBALPORT SECURES FIRST-EVER QF STINT

10:00 PM September 20, 2013

The Globalport Batang Pier are finally making a post-elims play appearance in the Philippine Basketball Association.

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The Batang Pier outlasted the Barangay Ginebra Kings in an overtime battle, squeezing out a 113-106 win to gain entry into the PBA Governors Cup quarterfinals at the Smart Araneta Coliseum last night.

Jay Washington poured in a career-high 30 points and also got 14 rebounds, five blocks and two assists while Sol Mercado piled up 27 points, eight assists, two steals and one rebounds, leading Globalport to a 4-5 finish in the short one-round-robin elimination phase.

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The Batang Pier secured the seventh spot in the quarters, leaving the Gin Kings (3-5), the Talk n Text Tropang Texters (2-6) and the Air21 Express (2-6) in a mad scramble for the last remaining seat in the next round.

“Five wins sana ito, but we learned from the game that we blew away, and we’re now making an appearance in the playoffs,” said Globalport coach Junel Baculi.

“Hindi pa namin alam kung sino ang quarters pairing namin. But whichever it is, we’ll be there fighting,” Baculi added.

The Kings will simplify the battle for the eighth and last slot in the quarters if they beat the Tropang Texters in their crucial battle Sunday at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay.

A two-way tie between Ginebra and Talk n Text or a three-way logjam among the Kings, the Texters and the Air21 Express may ensue. One game playoff will resolve whatever tie.

Globalport steered clear of the delicate situation in hurdling Ginebra largely on the exploits of Washington and Mercado.

“Credit should be given where it is due. Jay Wash came out of his shell after struggling in our last five games. Sol, after out spat, learned how to take charge and be responsible,” said Baculi.

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The Batang Pier could have won the game right in regulation play but Washington misfired a fade-away shot off Willy Wilson at the buzzer.

The 6-foot-7 center/forward, however, stayed focused in the extra period, himself making the big shots that eventually scuttled the Kings’ bid.

He scored six points in OT, the last two on a short stab making it 109-106 for Globalport.

Then Markeith Cummings, playing second behind the shadows of Washington and Mercado in this game, struck with a long jumper as the Batang Pier settled the outcome of the game with 25.6 ticks left.

It was a battle marked by 14 deadlocks and nine lead changes. (SB)

The scores:

GlobalPort 113 – Washington 30, Mercado 27, Cummings 19, David 15, Miller 9, Taha 4, Nabong 4, Salvador 3, Lingganay 2.

Ginebra 106 – Lowhorn 41, Helterbrand 18, Tenorio 11, Caguioa 11, Ellis 8, Baracael 6, Maierhofer 6, Labagala 3, Mamaril 2, Urbiztondo 0, Wilson 0, Raymundo 0.

Quarters: 24-31, 52-52, 76-77, 101-101, 113-106

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