June 25, 2024

PBA: Allein Maliksi, Meralco take 2-1 lead in semis clash vs. Ginebra

PBA: Allein Maliksi, Meralco take 2-1 lead in semis clash vs. Ginebra
Allein Maliksi reacts during Meralco and Ginebra's Game Three semifinal duel in the PBA Season 48 Philippine Cup. | Photo (c) PBA

Dasmariñas, Cavite – With still seven minutes remaining in Game Three of the PBA Season 48 Philippine Cup semifinals, Ginebra coach Tim Cone sat between his assistants, Richard del Rosario and Olsen Racela, then covered his face with both hands. 

That was his reaction after frustrations piled up for the Gin Kings since tip off on Wednesday night, May 22, at the Dasmariñas City Arena here.

As Ginebra could not whip up anything in the final minutes, Meralco went on to beat the Gin Kings, 87-80, and nab the upperhand in their best-of-seven series. 

Allein Maliksi poured 11 of his 16 points in the 31-18 opening salvo that set up the follow-up victory for the Bolts.

After that furious start, the Bolts did just enough to keep Ginebra at bay. 

Drawing support from the highly partisan crowd, Ginebra cut a 65-80 deficit early in the fourth period to 80-85 after Nard Pinto's breakaway layup with 24.8 ticks to go. 

[ALSO READ: PBA: Don Trollano, San Miguel repel Rain or Shine, close in on finals berth]

 But that was as far as the Gin Kings could go, with Jansen Rios icing the victory for Meralco on a pair of free throws.

"Those last five minutes, we shouldn't do that. We're up already. We're just floating. We weren't communicating," said Meralco coach Luigi Trillo. 

Chris Newsome could not connect from deep in four tries but still logged 14 points that went with six assists. Bong Quinto added 10 markers.


[ALSO READ: PBA: Rain or Shine coach Yeng Guiao explains endgame verbal spat with San Miguel’s Terrence Romeo in Game 3]

Japeth Aguilar led Ginebra with 15 points and nine rebounds, while Maverick Ahanmisi tallied 13 markers. 

After a 41-point career-high explosion in Game Two, Christian Standhardinger settled for 10 points he topped with 10 rebounds. 

The Scores:

MERALCO 87 – Maliksi 16, Newsome 14, Quinto 10, Banchero 9, Hodge 9, Almazan 8, Caram 6, Bates 6, Torres 3, Pascual 2, Rios 2, Dario 2, Mendoza 0, Pasaol 0 

GINEBRA 80 – J.Aguilar 15, Ahanmisi 13, Standhardinger 10, Tenorio 9,  Thompson 8, Pinto 6, Cu 5, Pessumal 5, Pringle 4, Onwubere 3, R.Aguilar 2, Murrell 0

Quarterscores: 31-18, 48-34, 72-59, 87-80