Purefoods notches solo spot, dispenses Meralco in PBA Comm’s Cup
MANILA, Philippines – Purefoods is again all alone at the apex of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup after they took the power out of Meralco, 96-85, Friday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
They now have a 8-3 record, and a fourth straight win, to go half-a-game ahead of Rain or Shine and Talk N’ Text.
Hotshots head coach Tim Cone said stopping Bolts import Josh Davis was key in their win.
“We did a good job, except on transition, against Josh Davis,” Cone said. “Raffy (Reavis), Ping (Marc Pingris), their concentration was on Davis.”
And hold they did. Davis only shot the ball 14 times, though he made 11 of them and scored 31 points and grabbed 13 rebounds.
As much as Davis’ performance, Hotshots import Denzel Bowles was the one who truly got the upper hand.
Bowles put up a crazy double-double of 37 points and 21 rebounds, and he was also crucial in the clutch.
Meralco managed to cut a 12-point Hotshots lead, 91-79, to six, 91-85, with less than a minute in the fourth which gave them ample hope for a comeback win.
Bowles, however, took matters into his own hands, as he sank a long two-pointer from the top of the key to give Purefoods a 93-85 lead with 34.1 remaining.
Cone said that it was crucial for Bowles to get into an early rhythm which gave him the momentum throughout the game.
“Denzel got into a rhythm very early in the game,” Cone said. “When he’s shooting the ball like that he’s very tough to defend.”
A scary moment, however, happened to Purefoods when reserve big man Yousef Taha injured his right calf early in the second period after a collision with teammate Alex Mallari.
Cone said that it was a big loss for them as Taha has been “very valuable to us.”
“It’s a pretty bad sprain, let’s see if we can get the team stronger.”
Purefoods’ dynamic wingmen duo of James Yap and Peter June Simon had 15 points apiece to help Bowles in the scoring department.
Gary David had 27 points for Meralco but took 29 shots, making 11, for a poor 38 percent shooting.
Meralco are in solo third with a 6-4 record but are still in contention for the second spot due to the quotient system.
PUREFOODS 96 – Bowles 37, Simon 15, Yap 15, Mallari 7, Barroca 7, Maliksi 5, Reavis 4, Pingris 4, Devance 2, Taha 0, Melton 0,
MERALCO 85 – Davis 31, David 27, Dillinger 10, Anthony 7, Cortez 4, Hugnatan 4, Macapagal 2, Reyes 0, Wilson 0, Ildefonso 0, Caram 0, Ferriols 0.
Quarters: 29-21, 50-45, 78-67, 96-85