Meralco dismantles Phoenix

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    MERALCO dismantled Phoenix 111-94 last night for its second straight win and gained solo fourth in the PBA Governors Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

    Allen Durham scored 27 points, pulled down 12 rebounds, and issued three assists for the Bolts while Baser Amer chipped in 26 markers, two boards, and four dimes.

    Raymond Almazan and Bong Quinto combined for 24 points. Chris Newsome tallied a triple-double of 13 points, 12 caroms, and 11 feeds as Meralco hiked its record to 3-1.

    The Fuel Masters, who missed coach Louie Alas after he was ejected for two consecutive technical fouls at the 7:30 mark of the second quarter, absorbed their second straight loss and slipped to 1-4.

    The Bolts scored a big follow-up to their 101-75 drubbing of Alaska last Oct. 4.
    Phoenix failed to redeem itself from its 118-123 defeat to TNT last Oct. 2.

    Meralco coach Norman Black praised his charges for getting the job done on both ends.

    “I couldn’t ask for more as far as offense was concerned especially when it came to the balance on our offense, how the players moved the basketball, and sharing the basketball,” said Black.

    “The defense was pretty solid for the most part. Got a little sloppy in the end, with (Eugene) Phelps just playing bully ball and basically scoring a lot of points in the fourth quarter. Luckily, we had an advantage to work off of. We just wanna continue to stay in character and be a good defensive team,” he added.

    Meralco took a 52-37 bubble at the half and still held a commanding 81-60 edge going into the payoff period.

    The Bolts padded their led to as high as 88-61 on a John Pinto three-pointer at the 10:38 mark of the fourth.

    Meralco was hardly threatened from there.

    Eugene Phelps scored 31 points for the Fuel Masters while RJ Jazul and RR Garcia had 11 and 10, respectively.