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Blackwater back on winning track, downs Columbian

Allein Maliksi sizzled for the Elite. PBA Media Group

By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA—It seems like a long break is all Blackwater needs to break out of its slump.

Currently at the bottom half of the standings, the Elite got a much needed win in their return to action in the PBA Philippine Cup, beating the Columbian Dyip, 106-100, at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay on Friday night.

Blackwater held off Columbian for most of the fourth quarter to take its second win of the conference.

The Elite broke out of a 78-all tie with a 7-0 run for an 85-78 lead with 9:11 left in the game.

The Dyip had a 5-0 run of their own to cut the lead down to two, but the Elite bounced back and upped their lead back to eight, the last at 100-92 with 2:02 remaining.

Columbian still had one final push as CJ Perez and Eric Camson buried back-to-back treys to trim the gap back to two, 100-98, with 1:10 left.

But an exchange of baskets from Mac Belo and Glenn Khobuntin, Roi Sumang and Paul Desiderio scored four straight free throws to seal the win for Blackwater.

Allein Maliksi made 29 points, six rebounds, five assists, and one block for the Elite, who moved up to 2-6.

Belo added 22 points, nine rebounds, two assists, and one steal, his best outing so far this season, while Desiderio had his own season-best with 12 markers, seven rebounds, and two assists, both coming off the bench.

Perez made 22 points, eight rebounds, two assists, one steal, and one block for the Dyip, who slipped to 3-5.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno