Exerting its might from the get-go, the Meralco Bolts doomed the Star Hotshots, 98-74, Tuesday night in the Game Two of their 2017 PBA Governors’ Cup semifinals clash at the Sta. Rosa Multi-Purpose Complex in Laguna.
Winning its past three games through thrilling comebacks, the Bolts pulled off an almost wire-to-wire victory this time to take a commanding 2-0 lead in the best-of-five series, inching closer to a return trip to the finals.
Reigning Best Import Allen Durham stuffed the stat sheet once more, tallying 18 points, 25 rebounds, five assists and three blocks in 36 minutes, while Jared Dillinger stayed hot from the rainbow country, knocking down six triples for an 18-point output along with four boards and three assists.
Ranidel de Ocampo also produced 18 points on top of three boards, three assists, and one block off the bench, Baser Amer had 16 markers, dimes, three rebounds, and one steal, while Chris Newsome ended up with 10 markers, four caroms, four dimes, two steals plus one block.
After Star made the first basket of the match, 0-2, Meralco did not waste time making its move, torching the Hotshots early for a 30-11 cushion at the end of the first period.
It was practically over from that point on as the Bolts continued to sizzle in the succeeding quarters, taking advantage of depleted Hotshots to raise their highest lead to 30 points, somewhere in the second half.
With Paul Lee and Rafi Reavis not seeing action for most of the way, Mark Barroca and Mon Abundo carried the scoring load for Star with 16 and 14 points, respectively, as import Kris Acox was once again held to a single-digit production with just nine points coupled with 12 caroms.
The Game Three of the series is on Thursday, October 5, 7 p.m. at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
MERALCO 98 – Dillinger 18, De Ocampo 18, Durham 18, Amer 16, Newsome 10, Hodge 9, Tolomia 7, Faundo 2, Yeo 0, Lanete 0, Sedurifa 0, Caram 0, Hugnatan 0.
STAR 74 – Barroca 16, Abundo 14, Acox 9, Ramos 8, Sangalang 6, Melton 5, Pingris 5, Reavis 4, Dela Rosa 4, Brondial 3, Lee 0, Jalalon 0, Simon 0, Gamalinda 0.
Quarter scores: 30-11, 53-32, 78-48, 98-74.