Narrow escape | Inquirer Sports

Narrow escape

In the less-watched, highly competitive half of semis bracket, Alaska guts out 2-1 series edge after tense ending
By: - Reporter / @MusongINQ
/ 05:45 AM November 16, 2018

Allen Durham of Meralco Bolts against Mike Harris and Sonny Thoss of Alaska Aces during game at the Cuneta Astrodome in Pasay City. INQUIRER PHOTO / RICHARD A. REYES

In another enthralling ending to a game of the PBA Governors’ Cup’s less-watched Final Four matchup, Alaska gutted out a 104-102 nipping of Meralco at Cuneta Astrodome on Thursday night to put a foot in the Finals, with coach Alex Compton now most wary of the Bolts more than ever.

“No single coach—and I hope no single player in my team—feels that we’re past Meralco,” Compton said after taking a 2-1 lead and getting the chance to close this one out on Saturday and see action in their first title series in more than two seasons.


“Because we’re not.”


It was another classic game in the evenly-matched series that has so far failed to draw in big crowds, and Compton believes that they will be in for a tougher battle come Game 4 as they try to vie for a championship for the first time since losing to Rain or Shine in the 2016 Commissioner’s Cup.

“They will look at it as a KO match and we have to also look at it as a KO match,” Compton went on after getting the big endgame buckets from Mike Harris and brilliant outside shooting from Simon Enciso in the fourth that enabled the Aces to have a chance at winning it in the stretch. “That (Game 4) is going to be another fantastic basketball game.”

Both teams were at their best and it wasn’t an ending of miscues, but of brilliance with Alaska watching with bated breath in the dying seconds as the Bolts missed three point-blank attempts at trying to forge overtime.

“I thought that was excellent basketball by both teams and that nobody deserved to lose,” Compton said after Harris finished with 31 points, 24 rebounds and seven assists. “Just incredible hearts on both sides.

“It’s back to the drawing board for us, we have no time to rest,” said Compton with the potential series-clinching game slated Saturday at 6:30 p.m. also at the Pasay venue.

Allen Durham finished with 37 points, 11 of them in the fourth period, but had the first and third misses in that last Meralco offensive which could have necessitated an extra five minutes.


Reynel Hugnatan added 19, but missed the tip-in attempt of Durham’s first miss.

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TAGS: Alaska, Basketball, Meralco, PBA Governors' Cup

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