MANILA, Philippines – Import Mario West turned up the aggression for the Meralco Bolts on Saturday, June 7 in a road game at Cagayan de Oro to get his team out of the cellar in the standings with a convincing 90-74 win over the San Miguel Beermen in the 2014 PLDT Home Telpad PBA Governors' Cup.
The 29-year old forward figured in a 42-point, 14-rebound performance, keeping the Beermen at bay despite their many attempts at overturning the Bolts' double-digit lead, especially down the stretch.
West's takeover began in the third period when Meralco turned a 41-40 halftime deficit into a 71-53 advantage nearing the start of the final frame.
West, who had 17 points in that dominant third period, gave Meralco that 18-point lead with a nasty alley-oop jam before San Miguel import Reggie Williams beat the buzzer with a jumper, which cut the Bolts' lead to 71-55 entering the fourth.
Several times in the payoff period the Beermen tried to mount a rally, chipping down the lead between 11 to 8 points. But Meralco, who looked a lot like their old selves just kept coming up with an answer on the other end.
The Bolts showcased to the jam-packed arena the familiar fluidity in their offensive sets, the suffocating defense, and the confidence and flare in their shooting, which have all been missing as of late.
With the win, Meralco pulled themselves out of last place in the standings with a 2-5 record, while the Beermen dropped to 4-3, falling behind leaders Talk 'N Text, Barangay Ginebra, Air 21, and San Mig Super Coffee. – Rappler.com