SLR 101, Ginebra 97

On: 12 April 2008

PBA Fiesta Cup

Just like in their game against the Magnolia Beverage Masters, the Sta. Lucia Realtors again started hot in the first half to build a 20-point lead and later on relied on their tenacious defense and a little luck to defeat the fighting Barangay Ginebra Kings and fashion out a pulsating 101-97 victory. It was the fourth straight win for the Realtors dating back to their Game 7 triumph against the Purefoods Tender Juicy Giants in last Conference's finals.

More importantly, it allowed the Realtors to keep pace with the envigorated Coca-Cola team, both of which sport a 3-0 record in the 2007-08 Smart PBA Fiesta Conference.

Despite the entry of new import Ernest Brown and the return of Fil-Am player Alex Crisano the Gin Kings suffered a third straight loss before a huge cheering pro- Ginebra crown at the Tacloban Convention Center last night.

Wesley Wilson, Ryan Reyes and Kelly Williams showed splendid teamwork leading the Realtors scoring with 22 points each. Playing without team captain Dennis Espino due to an injury and against the 2004 Fiesta Conference champs did not disrupt the Realtors' focus when they sunk five straight charities from a 95-94 count.

There were several scary moments for the Realtors, especially when Wilson committed several turnovers when he tried to play 10-15 feet from the basket where he is usually prone to miscues. However, Reyes, Paolo Mendoza and Nelbert Omolon provided the answer to the combined attacks of Mark Caguioa and Jayjay Helterbrand to reestablished control of the third quarter, 78-67.

Arriving in the country only on Thursday, Brown is still trying to feel his way around but still proved productive with 24 points, mostly from the freethrow line. Crisano also chipped in seven on his return to the Kings’ camp after a 3-season layoff due to his citizenship problems.

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