|Paul Lee led Magnolia to the quarterfinal bonus. PBA Media Bureau|
By JP Abcede
MANILA--The Magnolia Hotshots Pambansang Manok only needed a breakaway in the first half to eliminate the MERALCO Bolts from 2017-18 PBA Philippine Cup playoff contention as the former won, 94-65, in the lone contest played on Saturday at the Xavier University Gym in Cagayan de Oro, Misamis Oriental.
From a 22-all deadlock at the second period, Magnolia went on a 17-4 tear, forcing the Bolts to burn a timeout at that juncture. Paul Lee started the run with six straight points and Ian Sangalang capped it with four of his own.
The victors then had their largest margin, 94-63, during garbage period when Gryann Mendoza split his trip on the free throw line with 44.2 seconds to go.
Lee finished with 21 points on 52 percent shooting, along with three steals. Sangalang had 12 markers and six rebounds, while Robbie Herndon lit it up during the free-flowing fourth frame with 10 and four. Marc Pingris grabbed 10 boards, dished three assists, and rejected two shots.
The blue shirts finish the elimination round with eight wins against three losses, enough to secure a twice-to-beat advantage in the quarterfinals.
Chris Newsome led the Bolts with 13 points. Joseph Sedurifa scored 10.
MERALCO concludes the conference with a 4-7 standing.
Magnolia 94 - Lee 21, Sangalang 12, Herndon 10, Melton 8, Simon 8, Barroca 7, Mendoza 5, Reavis 4, Pingris 4, Gamalinda 4, Brondial 4, Pascual 4, Dela Rosa 3.
Meralco 65 - Newsome 13, Sedurifa 10, Lanete 9, Caram 8, Ballesteros 6, Amer 5, Salva 4, Canaleta 4, Faundo 4, Hugnatan 2, Dillinger 0, Bono 0, Tolomia 0, Baracael 0.
Quarters: 20-15, 44-32, 68-48, 94-65
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