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PBA: Maliksi, Meralco whip Mariano, Ginebra at UST


Allein Maliksi had the better homecoming as he led Meralco past Ginebra, 106-93, to return to their winning ways in the PBA On Tour, Wednesday night at the UST Quadricentennial Pavilion in España, Manila.

The former Growling Tiger led the way with 23 points, including 13 in the first quarter alone to help the Bolts take control of the game before coming through with a key bucket late as his side shut the door close on their rivals.

Maliksi shot 50-percent and also had seven rebounds, two assists, and three steals as Meralco bounced back from a loss to Magnolia the last time out, in the process collecting its fifth win in eight outings in the preseason.

“Maganda ‘to sa homecoming ni Allein, for him and [Aljon] Mariano,” offered Bolts head coach Luigi Trillo. “They have a lot of memories here.”

Bong Quinto supplied 22 points. Cliff Hodge made 15 points, six rebounds, and six assists. Franky Johnson made 13 while Raymond Almazan had 13 and 12.

Still, Trillo was far from satisfied even with the win, especially with how his wards mismanaged the lead– Meralco led by as much as 19 and already had an 18-point advantage with 4:25 left to play, but the Kings got to 11 twice.

Maliksi, though, was there to arrest the rally with a bank shot, and Hodge would follow that up with a high-looper. eventually settling the final score.

“We were OK today but nakakabalik sila,” said Trillo. “Daming chances where we pulled away, and then bumabalik. There’s a lot of things to improve on. It’s not a good thing where … we would get a big lead, but bumababa.”

Meralco will try to address those concerns against NLEX next Wednesday, 5 p.m. at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig. The team won’t have Trillo in their next two games as he’s bound for the States to attend clinics and scout imports.

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Von Pessumal, on the other hand, had a game-high 26 points to lead Ginebra, although he wasn’t able to finish the game after suffering an apparent left ankle injury with less than a minute remaining in the match.

Jeremiah Gray had 15 points and 10 rebounds while Sidney Onwubere and Jayson David had 14 and 12 markers, respectively.

The loss spoiled the homecoming of another UST product Aljon Mariano, who had eight points, four rebounds, an assists, two steals, and a block.

Ginebra (4-4) will look to redeem itself against Converge on July 16, Sunday, 7:30 p.m. at the FilOil EcoOil Centre in San Juan.

The Scores:

Meralco 106 – Maliksi 23, Quinto 22, Johnson 14, Hodge 15, Almazan 13, Rios 6, Dario 5, Pascual 4, Jose 2, Torres 2, Pasaol 0.

Ginebra 93 – Pessumal 26, Gray 15, Onwubere 14, David 12, R.Aguilar 8, Mariano 8, Pinto 5, Aurin 3, Gumaru 2, Dillinger 0, Espanola 0.

Quarterscores: 37-21, 57-46, 91-76, 106-93.

Written By

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


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