Bolts drag Gin Kings to winner-take-all Game 7

Meralco kept their championship hopes alive in the pursuit of their first-ever PBA Philippine Cup Finals appearance by outplaying the Barangay Ginebra Kings in a hard-fought 86-81 victory at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Wednesday night.

Bong Quinto, who was given a starting role after a long absence, delivered an impressive performance with a game-high 23 points.

Meanwhile, the dynamic duo of Chris Newsome and Allein Maliksi contributed their usual solid numbers to help propel the Bolts to a crucial Game Seven showdown in San Jose, Batangas on Friday.

Newsome and Maliksi combined for 35 points, with the latter scoring nine consecutive points during a crucial stretch of the game.

The Bolts showcased their resilience by dominating the Kings in fastbreak points (18-1) and points off turnovers (24-9), displaying their determination to extend the series.

Coach Luigi Trillo’s squad displayed a tenacious effort on both ends of the court, ultimately prevailing in a gritty battle to even the series at 3-3. Maliksi’s timely scoring spree and Newsome’s clutch free throws were instrumental in securing the victory for Meralco.

In addition to the standout performances of Quinto, Newsome, and Maliksi, Cliff Hodge, Chris Banchero, and Raymond Almazan also made significant contributions to the team’s success.

Despite a strong effort from Barangay Ginebra’s Christian Standhardinger, Japeth Aguilar, and Stanley Pringle, the Kings fell short in their bid to clinch the series.

The stage is now set for an epic showdown in Game Seven, where both teams will battle it out for a spot in the finals against San Miguel.

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