The 29-year-old proves he’s more than just his passing genius as Alaska claims a share of No. 1 in the 2018 PBA Governors’ Cup
Published 7:08 AM, October 22, 2018
Updated 7:08 AM, October 22, 2018
HOT HAND. Chris Banchero notches a career-high in points for Alaska. Photo from PBA Images
MANILA, Philippines – PBA’s leading assist man Chris Banchero proved he’s more that just a passing genius for Alaska.
Banchero displayed his scoring repertoire as he notched a career-high in points to power the Aces to a 116-109 win over Blackwater in the 2018 Governors’ Cup on Sunday, October 21.
Averaging 15.3 points prior in the game, the 29-year-old torched the Elite with 28 points on a 12-of-16 shooting as the Aces improved to 7-2 and forged a three-way logjam at No. 1 with Barangay Ginebra and Magnolia.
“I think it was my turn tonight to score the basketball. I was not really trying to score the basketball, it was just kind of got going,” Banchero told reporters after the win.
“You know my job is to find open guys and run the team. But when you got a jumpshot running like that. I was able to take over and get to my spot and play well.”
Banchero poured in 8 points of his output in the final quarter that helped Alaska build a lead enough to stave off Blackwater’s repeated rallies for a comeback.
And no, his shots weren’t uncontested.
The fourth-year guard pretty much had Nard Pinto in his face for the entirety of the duel but his shots just dropped.
“I got it going a little bit tonight. My jumper fell,” he said.
Although finishing with just 3 dimes, Banchero remained as the league’s leader in assists with 9.3 dishes in 9 games. Meanwhile, he hiked his scoring to 16.7 points to go with 4.7 rebounds and 1.1 steals.
Setting his big game aside, he was just glad the Aces bolstered their chances of finishing within the Top 4 and securing the twice-to-beat advantage that comes with it.
“We knew we needed to get that ’cause Top 4 is our goal and make the push from there. Being Top 4 is a huge advantage. That’s our goal.”
Alaska faces NLEX next on Friday, October 26, at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City.