Rain or Shine squashes Meralco’s comeback hopes for second win

Jane Bracher

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The Meralco Bolts ran out of comebacks on Wednesday as the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters turned them back

PAINT JOB. Rain or Shine's Jeff Chan charges past Meralco's Jared Dillinger for a layup. Photo by Josh Albelda/Rappler

MANILA, Philippines – The Meralco Bolts ran out of comebacks on Wednesday, March 26 as the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters turned them back, 96-79, in the 2014 PLDT Home TVolution PBA Commissioner’s Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. 

Rain or Shine halted Meralco’s attempt to repeat their telling come-from-behind victory against Air21 with a stifling 13-0 endgame run to notch only their second win of the conference in 5 games. 

“It is one of those rare days that we played our defense,” said Rain or Shine head coach Yeng Guiao. “We also had problems with our turnovers the past few games but I think we’ve managed to bring our turnovers down this game.”

The Painters limited coach Ryan Gregorio’s wards to an unacceptable 38.5% field goal shooting clip all game long, and going 41.7% themselves. 

They only had 11 miscues for this game but also forced 15 on Meralco to cash in 22 points off it. 

More than that, Rain or Shine managed to keep Meralco import Brian Butch in check and freeze him to just a measly 11 points and 13 rebounds. 

(RELATED: Meralco Bolts import Butch not bothered by replacement rumors)

With Butch cooling down following his 40-point, 31-rebound performance 3 days earlier, Meralco’s chances were very slim against the balanced offense Guiao has been getting from Rain or Shine. 

Eleven Painters were on the board for Rain or Shine with import Alexander McLean leading the way with his 23 points and 16 rebounds.  

Jeff Chan came in a near second with 21 markers on 5-of-10 field goals and a perfect 8-of-8 from the stripe. Paul Lee and Gabe Norwood added 16 and 13 points, respectively. 

“We’re just really starting to get our rhythm going,” Guiao admitted. “I hope it’s not too late.”

Rain or Shine kept Meralco to only 33 points for the first two quarters and built their biggest lead in the third at 68-51. 

The Bolts, however, tried to mount a rally in the payoff period once again with Cliff Hodge, Jared Dillinger and Gary David carrying the weight. Butch never scored in the fourth. 

Several times they inched to within 4 points throughout the final 12 minutes of play. The last time they did was on a Dillinger basket with 5:18 left, 83-79. But that’s the closest they would ever get as the Painters never allowed them to score again and ran away with the game. 

“We still consider ourselves in a hole and in a struggle that’s why we need to win a couple more games to get us out of that hole. We have temporary relief right now but we need to win more to stay in this conference,” Guiao said.  

David paced Meralco with 20 points. While Dillinger and Hodge had 14 and 12 markers, respectively. The Bolts evened their win-loss record to 3-3. 


Rain or Shine 96:  McLean 23, Chan 21, Lee 16, Norwood 13, Belga 7, Cruz 6, Araña 2, Almazan 2, Tiu 2, Ibañes 2, Rodriguez 2, Tang 0, Nuyles 0, Teng 0. 

Meralco 79: David 20, Dillinger 14, Hodge 12, Butch 11, Hugnatan 7, Artadi 4, Ildefonso 2, Sena 2, Guevarra 2, Wilson 2, Mandani 2, Al-hussaini 1, Caram 0, Salvacion 0. 

Quarters: 23-17; 44-33, 72-60, 96-79.


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