Ginebra's Justin Brownlee.

Ginebra’s Justin Brownlee. PBA IMAGES

MANILA, Philippines–Barangay Ginebra rode the hot hand of Justin Brownlee to stifle NLEX, 112-93, as the Gin Kings booked a return trip to the PBA Governors’ Cup title series.

The crowd darlings’ beloved import played with sustained brilliance all game long, finishing with 47 points and 10 rebounds to dispose of  the Road Warriors in four at Smart Araneta Coliseum in Cubao.

“Life’s a lot easier when you have Justin around. What a phenomenal performance,” said head coach Tim Cone.

“We had the pleasure of seeing that in five conferences now. Every time he comes, he just amazes me more and more,” he went on.

Jeff Chan added 20 points while LA Tenorio, Nard Pinto, and Christian Standhardinger chipped in with double figures each as the Gin Kings marched to their sixth PBA Finals appearance in the last six years.

“We never thought of it back then that we’d reach the Finals,” said Cone of his charges.

“They had many reasons to quit at certain points in the conference but they battled all the way through,” he added.

NLEX import Cameron Clark turned in his finest scoring performance with 34 points and 12 rebounds. But the Road Warriors looked they didn’t belong on the same floor as the Gin Kings with only Don Trollano and Justin Chua scoring 10 or more.

Ginebra enjoyed leads as big as 19 points in the contest.

The Gin Kings will now battle the winner Magnolia-Meralco series. A duel with the Hotshots will be the first title clash in the Governors’ Cup between the corporate siblings in 25 years, while a clash with the Bolts could be the fourth in their one-sided rivalry.

The Scores

Barangay Ginebra 112 – Brownlee 47, Chan 20, Tenorio 14, Pinto 12, Standhardinger 10, Thompson 4, Tolentino 3, Devance 2, R. Aguilar 0.

NLEX 93 – Clark 34, Trollano 15, Chua 10, Paniamogan 9, Alas 6, Rosales 5, Ighalo 5, Soyud 4, Semerad 3, Quiñahan 2, Miranda 0.

Quarters: 22-22, 53-50, 84-71, 112-93

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