Magnolia frustrates Ginebra for second straight win

Antonio Hester of Magnolia shoots over the outstretched arms of Ginebra’s Scottie Thompson. (PBA Images)


Magnolia caught a big fish in the brightest of lights, dominating rival Barangay Ginebra with a 118-88 triumph in the 2023 PBA Governors’ Cup edition of their Manila Clasico on Sunday, Feb. 12, at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City. 

The Hotshots didn’t waste any moment and went full throttle from tipoff to pick up their second straight win and improved to 2-3 in the standings.

Returning import Antonio Hester showed the way for Magnolia before the 11,212 crowd on both ends of the court with 28 points to go along with 18 rebounds while also dishing out nine assists.

Calvin Abueva and Paul Lee both contributed 18 markers in the morale-boosting affair. 

The Hotshots raced to their biggest lead of the match of 31 points in the fourth quarter after rising from a 13-all deadlock in the first. 

Magnolia never looked back and refused to let Ginebra spoil its consistent showing as Jerrick Ahanmisi capped it off with a triple with less than a minute to spare. 

“We’re very unselfish as a team. It’s all about competing and before the game sinabi ko lang sa kanila we need to enjoy the defensive battle. It’s the only chance against the elite team, a talented team like Ginebra,” said Magnolia head coach Chito Victolero. 

Justin Brownlee paced Ginebra with a 22-point outing including seven rebounds and nine assists as it absorbed its first loss of the season-ending conference.