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PBA: Pasaol on fire on rainy night as Meralco torches NLEX

Alvin Pasaol caught fire on a rainy Wednesday night, leading Meralco to a 96-83 victory over NLEX in the 2023 PBA On Tour at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.

Pasaol unloaded a game-high 25 points on 7-out-of-10 shooting from behind the arc, leading the Bolts to their second straight win in the tourney.

“Siguro na-overcome ko rin (‘yong shooting struggle) dahil sa binigay na tiwala ni Coach Nenad tsaka sa mga coaching staff,” the three-year vet said, who struggled shooting from beyond the arc before his hot finish this game.

Pasaol scored 16 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter alone, helping Meralco pull away in the deciding frame.

“Hopefully gano’n ulit na nangyari sakin, na parang sa UAAP dati. Siguro binibuild up ko lang ‘yong sarili ko ngayon,” the product of University of the East added.

Pasaol was a member of the UAAP Season 81 Men’s Basketball Mythical Five. There, he finished the season with an average of 24.4 points, 11.0 rebounds, and 1.9 steals.

“Sa kanya (Alvin) rin ‘yon… nireremind ko lang siya lagi kasi ilang years, pangit ng shooting niya sa three points eh. Sabi ko ‘Sige, mag extra shooting ka,’… So last few days, gaya nga ng sabi ko, nag-e-extra shooting siya,” said Meralco assistant coach Reynel Hugnatan, who spoke on behalf of active consultant Nenad Vucinic.

Vucinic called the shots for Meralco as head coach Luigi Trillo had personal matters to attend to.

Raymond Almazan scored 12 points to go along with eight rebounds. Meanwhile, Diego Dario and Allein Maliksi both tallied 11 markers.

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The Bolts now move third in the preseason standings as they improve to a 5-4 win-loss tally.

Versatile forward Sean Anthony recorded a double-double, 15 points and 11 rebounds on the other end. However, it was not enough to lift NLEX past the firepower of Meralco.

Don Trollano led the scoring for the Road Warriors with 17 markers and grabbed nine boards. Matt Nieto added 15 markers to go along with nine dimes.

The Road Warriors, now 3-5, will look to bounce back on July 21, Friday, also at the same Pasig venue. (Jose Gabriel Ignacio)

The Scores:

Meralco 96 – Pasaol 25, Almazan 12, Dario 11, Maliksi 11, Johnson 10, Rios 6, Pascual 6, Hodge 4, Torres 4, Quinto 3, Jose 2, Black 0

NLEX 83 – Anthony 15, Trollano 17, Nieto 11, Herndon 10, Alas 10, Doliguez 9, Pascual 4, Adamos 3, Fajardo 0

Quarterscores: 24-20, 43-39, 71-62, 96-83

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