Williams Mikey Williams of TNT Tropang Giga is back in action after a week-long suspension. PBA photo

Bolts strike again

November 17, 2022 Robert Andaya 290 views

MERALCO is back in the limelight.

Led by KJ McDaniels, Meralco outduelled sister team TNT Tropang Giga, 97-91, for its third straight win in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

McDaniels, who replaced Johnny O’Bryant as import, scored 26 points and 14 rebounds as the Bolts stayed very much alive in the wild, wild race for a quarterfinals berth.

Meralco, which also stayed unbeaten with McDaniels in the line-up, improved to 4-5 in a tie with its victim TNT.

Raymond Almazan also produced a big game for the Norman Black-mentored Bolts as he finished with 21 points, 13 in the foutth quarter, and 11 rebounds.

Aaron Black also contributed with a near triple-double of 17 points, 11 rebounds and six assists as Meralco continued its climb from a 1-5 start.

Two other players — Bong Quinto (13) and Chris Banchero (10) — also delivered for Meralco.

“This was a huge win for us because getting past TNT is something you don’t do every conference. So it gives us light at the end of the tunnel, that’s for sure,” said Meralco coach Norman Black.

“We play San Miguel, Magnolia and NLEX next so we still have a tough road ahead but winning this game really helps us a great deal. We just have to keep working in practice,” he added

The win by Meralco also spoiled the much-awaited return of Mikey Williams from a one-week suspension for TNT.

Cameron Oliver carried the fight for the Tropang Giga with 25 points on 10-of-23 shooting and 20 rebounds in nearly 40 minutes of playing time.

Williams finished with 20 points, Jayson Castro added 19 points and JP Erram had 10 points and eight rebounds for TNT.

The scores:

Meralco 97 – McDaniels 26, Almazan 21, Black 17, Quinto 13, Banchero 10, Maliksi 9, Pascual 1, Jose 0, Pasaol 0, Caram 0, Hodge 0.
TNT 91 – Oliver 25, M.Williams 20, Castro 19, Erram 10, Oftana 6, K.Williams 5, Pogoy 4, Khobuntin 2, Heruela 0, Ganuelas-Rosser 0.
Quarterscores: 21-23, 49-54, 73-74, 97-91.

Games Friday:

(Smart Araneta Coliseum)
3 p.m. — NLEX vs. TErrafirma
5:45 p.m. — Ginebra vs. Blackwater