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Meralco holds off late Blackwater run as Canaleta sizzles against former team

KG Canaleta put up a statement against his former team. PBA Media Bureau
By Ivan Saldajeno

PASAY—Meralco fought back from a first half deficit but still needed to buck a last gasp from Blackwater to take a 103-98 win in the PBA Philippine Cup at the Cuneta Astrodome on Friday night.

The Bolts found themselves trailing, 27-39, late in the second quarter as Roi Sumang sizzled for the Elite.

Meralco slowly recovered and pummeled Blackwater in the second half, eventually opening a 90-71 cushion early in the fourth quarter.

The Elite, however, still put up a fight as Allein Maliksi and Toto Jose helped them draw to within three, 98-101, with 33.1 seconds left.

KG Canaleta then broke Blackwater's hearts with a dagger triple that saved Meralco's cause.

Canaleta dropped 25 points against his former squad with 19 coming in the second half where the Bolts began pulling away.

Baser Amer also came up with a huge scoring effort in the second half, making 13 of his 17 markers in the final 24 minutes with 12 assists, five rebounds, and one steal.

Jared Dillinger also had a double-double of 15 points and 11 boards with two assists, one steal, and one block.

Maliksi and Jose each tallied 16 points for Blackwater.

Box Scores:

Meralco 103-Canaleta 25, Amer 17, Dillinger 15, Newsome 12, Lanete 8, Ballesteros 6, Tolomia 6, Baracael 5, Faundo 4, Hugnatan 3, Caram 2, Salva 0

Blackwater 98-Jose 16, Maliksi 16, Sumang 15, Belo 13, Erram 11, Cortez 8, Digregorio 6, Javier 6, Sena 4, Pinto 3, Banal 0, Cruz 0, Marcelo 0

Quarterscores: 23-27, 44-44, 77-66, 103-98

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