Meralco draws first blood against Ginebra in PBA Finals

Naveen Ganglani
Meralco draws first blood against Ginebra in PBA Finals
Allen Durham plays hero in overtime to lift Meralco past Ginebra

MANILA, Philippines – The Meralco Bolts took a 1-0 lead in the 2016 PBA Governors’ Cup Finals after defeating Barangay Ginebra San Miguel in overtime of Game 1 of the best-of-7 series, 114-109, on Friday, October 7, in front of 14,522 people at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum in Cubao.

Unable to close out the Gin Kings in regulation due to the heroics of LA Tenorio, the Bolts leaned on the shoulders of import Allen Durham to seal the game in OT and move 3 wins away from winning a championship in the franchise’s first finals appearance.

Durham finished with 46 points, 13 rebounds, and 7 assists, while star rookie Chris Newsome had 17 points, 9 boards, and 9 dimes in a game were Meralco rallied from a 15-point second half deficit. Jimmy Alapag also played well with 13 points and tied the record for the most made 3-pointers in PBA history.

Ginebra was led by the career-high 36 points of Tenorio. Import Justin Brownlee was limited to only 17 points on 7-of-18 shooting.

Alapag hit a go-ahead 3-pointer with 33 seconds left which put his team up 101-100 and also tied Allan Caidic’s record of 1,242 triples. The Bolts then went up by two after Durham split a visit to the line, but Tenorio was able to tie the contest with a runner to force OT.

Durham, however, scored the first 7 points in the extension, and Meralco stayed in control from there on.

“It’s a good time to beat them, first game of a championship series. It’s a well-fought game, it’s a tough game,” said Bolts head coach Norman Black post game.

Game 2 of the finals is on Sunday, October 9.

Scores:

Meralco (114): Durham 46, Newsome 17, Hugnatan 15, Alapag 13, Faundo 8, Amer 5, Caram 4, Hodge 4, Buenafe 2, Nabong 0, Uyloan 0

Ginebra (109): Tenorio 36, Brownlee 17, Caguioa 14, Devance 13, Mercado 8, Thompson 8, Aguilar 6, Cruz 5, Marcelo 2, Mariano 0

Quarter scores: 31-28, 42-53, 75-80, 102-102, 114-109 – Rappler.com

Editor’s note: The score has been corrected from 102-100 to the actual final tally of 114-109.

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