After a string of wins in come-from-behind fashion, the Meralco Bolts have finally won in wire-to-wire fashion, taking a 98-74 dismantling of the Star Hotshots in Game Two of their best-of-five semis series Tuesday night.
For Ranidel De Ocampo, Meralco’s fiery start — that saw them leave Star in the dust with a 25-8 surge in the opening salvo — was not something surprising. Instead, it was what the team had really planned.
“Yung plano talaga namin magkaroon ng magandang simula. Nangyari naman,” said De Ocampo, who finished with 18 markers — his highest output as a Bolt so far — on three triples, after the match at Santa Rosa Sports Complex in Laguna.
“Na-sustain namin yung magandang defense namin at kumunekta mga tira namin sa labas,” he added, lauding Meralco’s performance, especially from beyond the arc, where they hit a total of 14 three-pointers.
The Orangemen’s Game Two outing was nothing but spectacular. Aside from their excellent offensive showing, their defense also made a mark, as they limited the Hotshots to just 32 percent shooting and forced them to 13 turnovers.
With that, the six-time champion hopes that he and the Bolts can play the same way come Game Three this Thursday, October 6 at the SMART Araneta Coliseum, as they aim to close out their opponents and sail to the title match.
“Sana maulit namin yung ganung laro, yung halos perfect,” said the 35-year-old. “Pero alam naman naming hindi magiging madali sa Game Three.
“Ang pinakamahirap talaga tapusin ang isang series, so sana magawa namin.”