PBA: Meralco claims playoff spot, hands San Miguel first loss

PBA: Meralco claims playoff spot, hands San Miguel first loss

/ 09:28 PM May 04, 2024

Cliff Hodge Meralco Bolts beat San Miguel Beermen PBA

Meralco Bolts’ Cliff Hodge.–PBA IMAGES

MANILA, Philippines–Meralco kept it together in the most critical of times on Saturday night to deal San Miguel its first defeat, 95-92, and seize a quarterfinal berth in the PBA Philippine Cup.

Defensive ace Cliff Hodge delivered 20 points that went with 13 rebounds to power the shorthanded Bolts past the streaking defending champions in the contest at Batangas City Coliseum.

Meralco’s triumph, which gave the club a three-game winning streak, denied its vaunted enemy a chance to sew up the first sweep of the elimination phase in a decade.


READ: PBA: As sweep nears, San Miguel just taking it one game at a time

The last time a team dominated the elimination round was during the 2014 Commissioner’s Cup, when a Norman Black-coached TNT side won each of its nine games going into the knockout stage.

Allein Maliksi finished with 19 points off the bench, while Chris Newsome, Bong Quinto and Chris Banchero all had double-digit scores in the effort that could have serious implications for teams vying for a best-of-three quarterfinals berth.

The Bolts enjoyed leads as big as 17 points and managed to keep the Beermen at bay when pulled within two behind a CJ Perez bucket, 93-91, with 2:33 remaining.

READ: PBA: Meralco shuts down Magnolia to remain in playoff race

San Miguel’s winning streak ended at 10 games.


A logjam in the middle is shaping up with Ginebra, NLEX, TNT and Magnolia all having one more game left to play for their respective elimination round schedules.

With Perez clamped down to just eight points, San Miguel turned to June Mar Fajardo who led the way with 23 points and 19 rebounds.


Don Trollano and Jericho Cruz provided the other double-digit contributions, scoring 14 points each off the bench.

TNT, NLEX, Terrafirma and NorthPort are jockeying for the last three spots for the next round.

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TAGS: PBA, San Miguel Beermen

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