For Mike Tolomia, his solid outings was not wholly because of his own doing.
The 5-foot-10 combo guard was in his element again on Sunday night, providing a timely boost off the bench with 17 points and six assists to help Meralco take down the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters – his former team – 91-82.
Seven of Tolomia’s points came in the final frame, including a long three-pointer with 4:31 remaining that served as one of the ingredients for the Orangemen’s 16-3 finishing kick that gave them a 90-77 advantage with 1:53 left to play.
“Yun talaga yung hinihingi ni coach Norman simula pa lang nung natatalo kami, yung tulong sa locals talaga lalo na yung off-the-bench,” said Tolomia, recalling the point in the 2018 Governors’ Cup where they lost six straight games.
“Kailangan talaga namin suportahan si AD [Allen Durham] sa offense and defense.”
But for Tolomia, it’s not him alone that has been doing wonders for the Bolts, who have now won three straight games. The Far Eastern University product deflected the credit to their defense as the major key for their resurgence.
“Yung defense talaga yung malaking part sa three wins namin. Sa practice, focus namin defense talaga,” Tolomia shared, as Meralco have allowed their last three opponents to score just an average of 91.3 points on them.
With Sunday’s win, the Bolts have further boosted their chances of making it to the next round, as they improved to 4-6. But a tall order is on the horizon, as their last game will be versus the San Miguel Beermen on November 3.
“Alam naman natin na yung San Miguel contender talaga yun. ‘Di natin pwede maliitin yun, na kahit na wala man sila sa taas ng standings ngayon, San Miguel is San Miguel eh. Malakas talaga yun eh,” warned the 25-year-old sophomore.
“Pero gagawin pa rin namin kung ano yung nakakatulong sa three wins namin, which is defense.”
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