Bolts force Game 7 in PBA semis

Bolts force Game 7 in PBA semis
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THE Meralco Bolts triumphed over the Barangay Ginebra Kings, 86-81, in Game 6 of the PBA Philippine Cup semifinals to force a winner-take-all Game 7 on May 29, 2024 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

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The huge win means the two teams will battle it out again for the right to face the San Miguel Beermen in a best-of-seven finals showdown. Game 7 will be held in San Jose, Batangas.

Veteran wingman Allein Maliksi stepped up in crunch time, scoring nine of Meralco’s last 13 points to repulse the resilient Kings. He finished with 14 markers to help the Bolts earn a shot at keeping the finals from becoming an all-SMC affair.

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Chris Newsome and Bong Quinto were the leading scorers for the Bolts, with 23 and 21 points respectively. Quinto’s three-pointer was a pivotal moment, extending the Bolts’ lead to 69-61 with just 7:38 remaining in the match. Despite Ginebra’s persistent efforts, they couldn’t close the gap, and free-throws by Newsome in the final seconds sealed the Bolts’ victory.

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Ginebra’s big men, Japeth Aguilar and Christian Standhardinger, had 19 points each, while Maverick Ahanmisi added 13. However, the Kings couldn’t overcome the poor outing of 2022 MVP Scottie Thompson, who finished with only nine points on 3-of-12 shooting. / JNP

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