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PBA: Phoenix clinches QF bonus with crucial win vs Meralco

Johnathan Williams scores on a highlight dunk. PBA Images
By Ivan Saldajeno

QUEZON CITY—Phoenix all but sealed a twice-to-beat advantage in the PBA Commissioner's Cup by taking down Meralco, 93-83, on Wednesday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

In a battle for the second spot in the team standings, the Fuel Masters survived a sloppy sequence within the last five and a half minutes that allowed the Bolts to crawl back by holding them scoreless for the last 2:55 of the game even as RJ Jazul iced the game with a huge three with 1:16 remaining.

Jason Perkins led Phoenix, which moved up to 8-2, with 22 points on 9-for-13 field goals including a perfect 5-of-5 on twos and eight rebounds.

Johnathan Williams added 19 points, 15 rebounds, five assists, and one block.

The Fuel Masters could go to as high as the second seed if they beat the TNT Tropang Giga on Sunday night at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig. 

Shonn Miller, hampered by foul trouble, was held to 19 points but was still enough to lead Meralco, now down to 7-3, in scoring. He also had nine rebounds and five steals.

The Bolts could still clinch the Top 4 bonus, but they must now beat the Terrafirma Dyip on Friday night also at the Smart Araneta Coliseum and hope that either the San Miguel Beermen or Barangay Ginebra lose their remaining games. 

Follow him on X: @IvanSaldajeno

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