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Thursday, June 13, 2024

Newsome’s game-high 26 markers lift Meralco Bolts to victory over San Miguel, 2-1 series lead

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The Meralco Bolts are back in the lead of the 48th Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Philippine Cup final series.

Filipino-American guard Chris Newsome delivered a standout performance, scoring a game-high 26 points, including nine critical points in the fourth quarter, to propel the Bolts to a 93-89 victory over the San Miguel Beermen on Sunday at the Araneta Coliseum.

Newsome, 33, showcased his clutch abilities by sinking a crucial three-pointer with 34.1 seconds remaining, sealing the win with two free throws with just 11.3 seconds left, and pushing the Bolts to a 2-1 lead in their teams’ best-of-seven championship series.

“These guys have been winning, but we clearly need to improve in some areas,” said Bolts coach Luigi Trillo, as he looked ahead to Game 4 on Wednesday.

Mo Tautuaa led the Beermen with 19 points but was effectively neutralized by the Bolts’ defense in the final quarter.

CJ Perez, stepping up in the absence of Tautuaa’s scoring in the last 10 minutes, added 18 points for the Beermen.

The game took a decisive turn after Newsome’s three-pointer gave the Bolts a 91-89 edge with 34.1 seconds left. Perez missed a crucial drive with 30 seconds remaining, followed by a turnover after Cliff Hodge secured the rebound.

Newsome extended the Bolts’ lead to four points with his two free throws, awarded after Perez’s foul, setting the final score.

The Beermen, who also received 12 points each from Junemar Fajardo and Marcio Lassiter, missed three significant attempts in the closing moments, sealing their defeat.

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