At the Ynares Center here on Saturday, Meralco defeated Blackwater, 91-84, to take an early lead in the PBA Season 48 Commissioner’s Cup. Suleiman Braimoh led the way once again.
With 40 points and 16 rebounds in 43 minutes, the 34-year-old was largely responsible for leading the Bolts to their second straight victory and their second straight conference start of 2-0.
With 5:54 left in the game and down as many as 14 points, the Bossing rallied to within five, 80-85, thanks in large part to Braimoh.
With 1:07 remaining, he scored a jam to extend their lead to 87-80, making their opponents pay a heavy price for missing multiple opportunities to reduce the gap.
With 34.1 seconds remaining, Chris Newsome made sure their import’s efforts wouldn’t be in vain by sinking the dagger via jumper, 89-81.
Meralco defeated Allein Maliksi, who had to leave the game early due to a fractured nose from an unintentional collision late in the second quarter, thanks to nine points apiece from Cliff Hodge and Bong Quinto. With four points, he departed.
The Bolts will take a plane to Japan on November 15 to play in the East Asia Super League against Allen Durham and Ryukyu. On November 19, they will return to conference play against San Miguel. It is a 3 p.m. game. at the Araneta Coliseum, SMART.
Blackwater’s Chris Ortiz led the team with 29 points and six rebounds. The Puerto Rican ignited their comeback attempt with nine points in the fourth quarter and 21 points in the second half.
On Wednesday, November 15, at 4 p.m., The Bossing (1-1) will attempt to resume their winning ways against Terrafirma (0-1). at Ynares-Antipolo even now.
- Meralco 91 – Braimoh 40, Hodge 9, Quinto 9, Dario 8, Black 7, Newsome 5, Maliksi 4, Caram 3, Almazan 2, Rios 2, Bates 0, Pasaol 0.
- Blackwater 84 – Ortiz 29, Suerte 10, Ayonayon 9, Banal 8, Hill 8, Casio 6, David 5, Rosario 5, Ilagan 2, Guinto 1, DiGregorio 0, McCarthy 0, Escoto 0.
Quarter scores: 28-25; 47-42; 70-64; 91-84