25 September 2016

Bolts 105, Enforcers 82

Jimmy Alapag
Meralco repeated over Mahindra, 105-82, to gain a semifinals berth in the 2016 PBA Governors' Cup at Ynares Center last 24 September.

The Bolts bucked another slow start and overcame a double-digit deficit thanks to a 28-8 run in the second quarter. With the win, they have arranged a showdown with their sister team, Talk N' Text, in a best-of-five semis duel.

"We really felt this was an important game for us. We felt like it was a must-win situation for us. We did not want to play them another game. We knew that if we lost tonight we will give them confidence for the last game," said Meralco head coach Norman Black.

"We wanted to put in all our efforts tonight but we still got off in a slow start in the first half, but eventually in the second quarter we started to get our bearings, we started to play defense a little better, we rebounded better and took control of the game," Black added.

Meralco never letup again as the lead ballooned to 23, 84-61, after the third quarter where it outscored Mahindra, 34-16, with Allen Durham and Chris Newsome nearly matching the Enforcer's output.

The game was very much like the two teams’ previous meeting on Wednesday where the Bolts came back from 16 points down and won, 104-99.

Durham had 24 points, 16 rebounds and six assists while rookie Newsome shone with 19 points on 9-of-12 shooting from the field for Meralco.

James White paced Mahindra with 20 points and 10 rebounds and was often times motivating his teammates to fight back throughout the course of the game. However, the struggling Enforcer's just didn’t get into any rhythm after losing a 15-point lead in the second period.

Mahindra closed out its campaign on a sour note, losing its last five games, three of which came at the hands of Meralco.

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