MANILA, Philippines – Meralco continued to be a thorn on the side of Platinum Karaoke as it barged into the PBA 3×3 finals for the third time in four legs with a 21-13 semifinal win at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig on Sunday, December 5.
Dexter Maiquez delivered the goods late and finished with 6 points to help the Bolts thwart erstwhile unbeaten Platinum.
Meralco, which has now beaten Platinum in three playoff matches this season, also eliminated the guest team in the semifinals of the first leg and won the second leg championship by toppling Platinum in the finals.
Platinum looked on its way to exacting revenge as it led 12-10 midway through the game before the Bolts unloaded a 9-1 run anchored on 4 points from Maiquez to seize a 19-13 advantage.
Joseph Sedurifa then sank back-to-back free throws to secure the win as Meralco bounced back from its surprising quarterfinal exit in the third leg.
Tonino Gonzaga topscored for the Bolts with 7 points, while Sedurifa contributed 5 points.
Platinum reached the semifinals without a single loss as it topped Pool A with a 4-0 record and eliminated Terrafirma in the quarterfinals, but it just ran out of steam against a more organized Meralco squad.
The Bolts will shoot for a second PBA 3×3 title later on Sunday against the Purefoods TJ Titans, who advanced to the finals for the first time after a 21-11 whipping of the TNT Tropang Giga.
All of the top three teams in third leg were given the boot as champion Sista Super Sealers failed to make it past the pool stage, while runner-up Pioneer Pro Tibay and third-placer Terrafirma bowed out in the quarterfinals. – Rappler.com