Meralco Bolts stopped the Alaska Aces on its tracks with an 89-74 victory in the 2018 PBA Commissioner’s Cup on Sunday at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
Tying their victims for second place with an identical 7-2 mark, the Bolts extended their winning run to four games, while putting a stop to Alaska’s seven-game win streak in the process.
Chris Newsome led six Meralco players in double figures, scoring 18 points and adding eight assists in 42 minutes. Baser Amer had 17 points and six dimes, while Jared Dillinger contributed 17 markers as well.
Arinze Onuaku contributed 14 points and 23 rebounds in almost 40 minutes, while Niño Canaleta and Ranidel de Ocampo both came off the bench and supplied 11 and 10 markers, respectively.
The Bolts turned things around in the third quarter after a tight first half, exploding for 32 points while limiting their opponents to just 17 points for a 73-57 advantage heading into the final period.
Vic Manuel, who finished with 22 points and eight rebounds, tried bringing the Aces back to the game by unloading eight straight points to cut the deficit to just eight, 65-73. But the Bolts were hardly threatened, retaliating with an 11-0 run to take their largest lead at 84-65 in the final six minutes.
Antonio Campbell paced the Alaska Aces with 25 points and 14 rebounds.
MERALCO 89 – Newsome 18, Dillinger 17, Amer 17, Onuaku 14, Canaleta 11, De Ocampo 10, Hugnatan 2, Hodge 0, Caram 0, Lanete 0.
ALASKA 74 – Campbell 25, Manuel 22, Banchero 13, Casio 5, Thoss 4, Pascual 3, Enciso 2, Racal 0, Exciminiano 0, Baclao 0.
Quarter scores: 23-19, 41-40, 73-57, 89-74.