May 29, 2024

PBA: Converge finally breaks through, jolts Meralco

PBA: Converge finally breaks through, jolts Meralco
Bryan Santos leads Converge to its first win against Meralco in the PBA Philippine Cup on Sunday, April 21. | Photo (c) PBA

Converge leaned on the hot hands of Bryan Santos to finally notch its first victory at the expense of Meralco, 104-99, in the PBA Season 48 Philippine Cup at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig City on Sunday, April 21.

Santos fired a team-high 22 points built on seven triples, including two in the final five minutes that proved to be the difference as the FiberXers finally barged into the win column after eight straight losses.

The Bolts fell to 3-5.

“We didn’t lose hope when the losses were piling up. We want to exit this conference on a high note,” said Converge coach Aldin Ayo.


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Santos fiired a trey to break a 93-all deadlock with still 4:55 left on the clock.

But Meralco retaliated behind Aaron Black and Hodge to regain a 97-96 lead before King Caralipio knotted the count anew at 97-all for the FiberXers.

Santos then uncorked another triple off a broken play at the 2:56 mark then JM Delos Santos followed it up with a turnaround jumper with 10.8 ticks to go as Converge completed the breakthrough.

Alec Stockton amassed 20 points for the FiberXers before fouling out heading into the last 6:55 of the match while Justin Arana shone with 18 markers, seven rebounds and the same number of assists.


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Chris Newsome, whose midrange jumper allowed Meralco to threaten at 99-100 with 2:23 to go, was the team's top scorer with 25.

Chris Banchero backed him up with 20 points spiked by four triples, while Black produced 19 points and six assists in a little over 29 minutes of play.

The Scores:

CONVERGE 104 – Santos 22, Stockton 20, Arana 18, Winston 14, Delos Santos 10, Caralipio 9, Maagdenberg 4, Melecio 4, Nieto 2, Fleming 1, Fornilos 0.

MERALCO 99 – Newsome 25, Banchero 20, Black 19, Hodge 10, Quinto 9, Caram 6, Bates 5, Pasaol 5, Rios 0, Pascual 0, Maliski 0, Torres 0.

Quarterscores: 23-25, 42-53, 77-77, 104-99