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PBA: Caram, Hodge power Meralco past Converge

ANTIPOLO – Meralco sent Converge skidding, 96-88, to bounce back in the PBA On Tour, Sunday night at the Ynares Center here.

Allein Maliksi showed the way with 16 points as he helped the Bolts gain a head start in the fourth quarter en route to redeeming themselves after absorbing a 100-93 defeat at the hands of Phoenix Super LPG exactly a week ago.

Match was tied at 70-all after three but the veteran gunner put his side ahead through a perfect trip to the foul line seconds into the final chapter, and the rest of his teammates would pick it up from there to secure the win.

“Honestly, I was worried that we would get a beating because I saw them against Magnolia. They were tough,” offered head coach Luigi Trillo, referring to the FiberXers’ close 99-95 loss to Magnolia last Wednesday.

“You know, this is one game, but I think we did enough to win defensively,” the champion mentor added. “Good bounce-back game for us.”

Anjo Caram produced 15 points, while Cliff Hodge finished with 14 markers and 10 rebounds with two blocks as the vets helped out in their strong finish.

Bong Quinto and Raymond Almazan supplied 11 points apiece, and Alvin Pasaol added 10 as six players scored in double figures in the win.

Meralco (2-1) will next play San Miguel on June 10, Saturday, 5 p.m. in Tiaong for the league’s first game in the Quezon province since 2020.

Jeron Teng, on the other hand, headed Converge with a game-high 21 points and five rebounds in their second straight loss.

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Justin Arana, Barkley Ebona, and Kevin Racal all had 12 points each, while guard Alec Stockton added 11 markers, 12 rebounds, and seven assists.

The FiberXers will head into a lengthy break before taking on Blackwater on June 14, Wednesday, 5 p.m. at the Ynares Center in Pasig.

The Scores:

Meralco 96 – Maliksi 16, Caram 15, Hodge 14, Quinto 11, Almazan 11, Pasaol 10, Torres 9, Jose 5, Johnson 2, Rios 2, Pascual 1.

Converge 88 – Teng 21, Ebona 12, Arana 12, Racal 12, Stockton 11, Nieto 8, Balanza 7, Ambohot 5, Guinto 0.

Quarterscores: 24-21, 49-44, 70-70, 96-88.

Written By

Oftentimes on the sidelines. Forever a student of the game. Morayta-bred.

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