June 25, 2024

PBA: Chris Newsome comes up clutch as Meralco outlasts San Miguel to seize 2-1 Finals lead

PBA: Chris Newsome comes up clutch as Meralco outlasts San Miguel to seize 2-1 Finals lead
Chris Newsome of Meralco outruns San Miguel's CJ Perez during Game 2 of their PBA Season 48 Philippine Cup best-of-seven finals. | Photo (c) RM Chua/One Sports

Chris Newsome conjured some magic in the clutch as Meralco hammered out a 93-89 win over San Miguel in Game 2 of the PBA Season 48 Philippine Cup finals on Sunday, June 9.

Newsome battered the Beermen with 26 points, including the Bolts’ final five points that allowed them to take a 2-1 lead in the race-to-four series.

He also had four rebounds, four assists and two blocks.

 

“That’s Meralco basketball for you. It’s not just about one person,” said Newsome post-match at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

After San Miguel gained a precarious 89-88 lead on June Mar Fajardo’s free throws with 51.9 ticks remaining, the former Ateneo guard took over for Meralco.

He responded with a booming triple from the left corner, the same spot where Marcio Lassiter hit his winning triple in Game 2, and put Meralco up, 91-89.

Chris Newsome nails the huge triple at endgame for Meralco as San Miguel's Mo Tautuaa scrambles to post a defensive stop during Game 3 of the PBA Season 48 Philippine Cup finals. | Photo (c) RM Chua

CJ Perez could not convert on the other end and was forced to foul Newsome with 11.3 seconds left on the clock.

The cat-quick guard canned two pressure-packed freebies for the final tally.

[WATCH: PBA Player of the Game Highlights: Chris Newsome steady at endgame as Meralco edges San Miguel, goes 2-1 in Finals]

Newsome, who struggled with just six points in the first half, got plenty of help from the rest of the Bolts, including Raymond Almazan who did a tremendous job limiting seven-time Most Valuable Player June Mar Fajardo.

Almazan finished with 17 points, 13 rebounds and three blocks in almost 25 minutes of action while holding Fajardo to just 12 points on 2-of-5 shooting from the field.

Fajardo also logged 15 rebounds, two assists and two blocks but committed seven turnovers. 

Bong Quinto scored 16, including a big triple that gave Meralco a four-point cushion, 88-84, at the 3:06 mark of the fourth period.

Chris Banchero put in 10 points, six rebounds and six assists, while Cliff Hodge had 10 points and 14 rebounds he laced with four assists.

[WATCH: PBA Game Highlights: Meralco hangs tough in crunch time, nips San Miguel in Game 3]

With Fajardo struggling, Mo Tautuaa picked up the cudgels and swung 19 big points but was scoreless in the fourth period. Perez added 18 points, five boards, two assists and four steals.

The Scores:

MERALCO 93 – Newsome 26, Almazan 17, Quinto 16, Banchero 10, Hodge 10, Maliksi 8, Torres 2, Pascual 2, Bates 2, Rios 0, Caram 0

SAN MIGUEL 89 – Tautuaa 19, Perez 18, Lassiter 12, Fajardo 12, Trollano 11, Teng 10, Cruz 7, Ross 0, Brondial 0, Enciso 0

Quarterscores: 28-24, 48-46, 71-70, 93-89