Meralco 94 – Ginebra 81, Meralco trails series 1-2
He’s the best import this conference for a reason.
Allen Durham carried the Meralco Bolts to their first win in the Finals with a herculean effort on both ends of the floor. He put up numbers all across the board as he did almost everything to keep the Bolts afloat in the Finals. Durham scored 38 points, grabbed 20 rebounds, dished out four assists and blocked Ginebra five times. Meralco needed every bit of production from their import as Chris Newsome, Baser Amer and Cliff Hodge were all misfiring. Backing up Durham in the game was Reynel Hugnatan. The veteran big man scored 22 points off the bench on seven three-pointers made.
Ginebra tried to pull away several times in the game. In the second quarter, the Ginebra bench mob led by Mark Caguioa was able to build a seven-point lead. They looked like they were on their way to build a double-digit lead but Durham and Hugnatan brought Meralco back in the game. The Bolts only trailed by one point heading into the second half. Ginebra threatened to run away with the game early in the fourth quarter. Justin Brownlee and Greg Slaughter combined to build a five-point lead. But that was the last time they would be in the game.
Durham scored six of Meralco’s next eight points to tie the game at 77. He then scored seven more points in a four minute stretch to help the Bolts pull away by eight points. Dillinger and Hugnatan added big shots from beyond the arc to help increase Meralco’s lead by double-digits in the final two minutes of the game. Durham scored 13 points in the crucial fourth quarter stretch. Meralco outscored Ginebra 28-17 in the final period.