Meralco Bolts ground TNT to hike PBA record to 3-1

Chris Newsome and Meralco bagged a huge win over TNT (PBA)

By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña

The Meralco Bolts scored a much-needed victory over the TNT Tropang Giga, 109-95, in the ongoing PBA Commissioner’s Cup last November 26, 2023, held at the Philsports Arena.

Meralco’s hardworking import Su Braimoh was the catalyst for the Bolts after finishing the game with 37 big points and 10 rebounds.

The Bolts needed that performance from their reinforcement after TNT’s Rondae Hollis-Jefferson exploded for 47 points.

Also solid for the Bolts was the returning point guard Chris Banchero who dropped an efficient all-around outing of 18 points, four assists, and two rebounds.

With the Tropang Giga aiming for a clutch finish in the final three minutes of the game, the duo of Braimoh and Banchero steered Meralco with a momentum-clinching 12-1 scoring run that officially fended off TNT.

TNT got to within two points after Jefferson’s timely hits but Meralco responded with that counter-run and began to retake full control of the game in the last two minutes.

Meralco stuck to their game plan of letting Jefferson do his thing but they have to stop the locals from getting their groove.

Their strategy paid off dividends as Jason Castro was the only local to reach double digits in scoring with 19 markers while the rest of the squad combined for just 29 points.

Bong Quinto backstopped Banchero and Braimoh with 13 points while superstar floor general Chris Newsome added 12 points.

Despite missing the presence of Aaron Black and Allein Maliksi due to their respective injuries, the second-stringers stepped up and delivered valuable minutes for head coach Luigi Trillo.

Meralco will look to clinch a back-to-back victory outing as they challenge the NLEX Road Warriors on December 3, 2023.

On the other hand, the Tropang Giga will seek to bounce back on December 1, 2023, against the NorthPort Batang Pier.