Bolts shock Hotshots to take early semis lead
Paul Lintag on Oct 01, 2017 09:01 PM
Jared Dillinger hit two booming treys to spark the Bolts' game-winning run, a 15-0 blast against Star to take an early 1-0 lead in their best-of-5 Governors' Cup semifinal series.
Meralco is pretty good at this whole comeback thing.
The no. 1 Bolts survived a defensive struggle against no. 4 Star to open their best-of-5 Governors' Cup semifinal series Sunday, scoring a 72-66 come-from-behind win at the Alonte Sports Arena in Binan, Laguna.
Down by nine, 57-66, with 3:44 to go, Meralco would hold Star scoreless the rest of the way, forcing the Hotshots to five straight turnovers, the first three being 24-second shot clock violations.
During that span, Jared Dillinger would hit two booming treys to spark the Bolts' game-winning run, the final nail in the coffin being Allen Durham's fallaway jumper over Kris Acox to give Meralco a 70-66 lead with 33 seconds left.
Despite picking up a huge win, the Bolts had to claw their way back after Star started the game on top, 21-7.
Meralco would settle down and cut that deficit to two at the break. The Bolts even took the lead during some stretches in the second half but the Hotshots fired a 14-0 run for a rather comfortable 59-47 advantage early in the fourth.
Cue Meralco comeback after that.
"It's always gonna be a defensive struggle with Star. They really hits us hard in the beginning and took us out of our offense," head coach Norman Black said.
"Luckily for us, our defense held up and kept us in the game," he added.
Despite a slow start, import Allen Durham was a beast for the Bolts, dropping 23 points and 23 rebounds. Jared Dillinger was also effective, going for 15 points and five assists.
For Star, three players scored in double figures led by Jio Jalalon's 15. Paul Lee and Mark Barroca had 11 apiece while import Kris Acox was limited to only seven points. He did have 16 rebounds though.
Game 2 of the best-of-5 will be on Tuesday at Sta. Rosa, Laguna.
MERALCO 72 - Durham 23, Dillinger 15, Amer 10, Newsome 7, De Ocampo 5, Hodge 5, Lanete 4, Hugnatan 3, Caram 0, Nabong 0, Tolomia 0.
STAR 66 - Jalalon 15, Barroca 11, Lee 11, Sangalang 9, Acox 7, Simon 6, Pingris 4, Brondial 2, Reavis 1, Dela Rosa 0, Melton 0, Ramos 0.
Quarters: 7-21, 32-36, 47-53, 72-66.
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