Durham's monster game bolsters Meralco's playoff drive

September 09, 2017

STA. ROSA - Meralco shook off its sluggish showing the last time, recalling its sharp form as it smothered Star, 96-90, to boost stock in the Top Four in the PBA Governors Cup elims at the Sta. Rosa Multi-Purpose Complex here Saturday night.

Allen Durham dished out a near triple-double job with 29 points, 27 rebounds and seven assists, and led the way in their conquest of Malcolm Hill and his Star teammates in their Petron Blaze road showdown.

Chris Newsome, Cliff Hodge, Baser Amer and Garvo Lanete, the other Meralco starters, also came out with their guns ablaze, helping the Bolts bounce back from their 107-113 loss to the TNT Tropang Texters coming from a long 18-day layoff.

Newsome, Hodge, Amer and Lanete produced at least 11 points each for the Bolts who got off to strong start and went on to send the Hotshots reeling to a third consecutive loss.

With the loss, the Hotshots dropped to joint fifth with the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters and the San Miguel Beermen at 4-3.

Meralco made a huge turnaround from its sluggish showing against TNT on Wednesday.

The Bolts pummeled the Hotshots, 13-0, on fastbreaks; 13-6, off turnovers; and, 11-1, on second-chance points as Meralco erected an early 19-point spread then took the half at 59-41.

Durham and his teammates later stretched their lead to 20 before fending off the Hotshots' last-ditch stand.

The Meralco starting unit clobbered its Star counterpart, 76-58.

Amer and Lanete fired three triples each, helping fuel their early breakaway.

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Durham had had 15 points, 14 rebounds and five assists as against Malcolm Hill's 10 markers, four boards and one dish-off in the first 24 minutes of play.

Hill finished with 28 points but the Star local top guns had meager outputs, including Mark Barroca and Allein Maliksi with just five and seven, respectively.