MANILA, Philippines—With LA Tenorio ailing, Nards Pinto gave Ginebra a much-needed lift to beat Rain or Shine in its PBA Governors’ Cup debut on Sunday night.
Pinto came up big, scoring eight of his 12 points in the fourth quarter to help the Gin Kings fend off the Elasto Painters, 116-108.
“Having guys like Nards and Scottie, we didn’t panic when we fell behind for that short time and got back into the game with a couple of big threes. We also made a little bit of a run thanks to him,” coach Tim Cone said.
The former Arellano star hit timely baskets in the final frame, including a triple that sparked an 11-0 run after the Gin Kings trailed by three with under nine minutes to play.
Pinto also had two rebounds, three assists and a steal in 20 minutes off the bench.
Cone said Tenorio “had a little bit of a tweak of his abdominal muscle” that limited him to just two minutes of action. He finished with three points.
“He’s a warrior, I don’t think anybody else would even try to play at that point but LA wants to play and that’s why Nards was so absolutely crucial because we wanted to keep Scottie’s minutes down a little bit and we didn’t think LA was gonna have a lot of minutes,” said Cone.
“So we knew Nards was gonna come out and man, he really played in that fourth quarter. He always plays well in the fourth quarter,” he added.
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