Finally, Meralco won a close one.
Baser Amer waxed hot in the second overtime and the Bolts snapped out of an alarming skid with a 126-123 victory over hard-luck NorthPort Friday in the PBA Philippine Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Chris Newsome, Cliff Hodge and birthday boy Nico Salva also left their mark on the win, Meralco’s first in four games in the conference decided by four points at most.
As a result, the Bolts cut short their slide at three games and improved to 3-5 overall.
More wins in their last elimination round games against Rain or Shine on Friday, Alaska on March 20 and Barangay Ginebra on March 27 and they would gain inclusion among the eight teams advancing to the quarterfinals.
“That was a hard-fought game between two teams that are really fighting for their lives and the playoffs, especially us,” noted Meralco coach Norman Black.
The loss is indeed a bitter one for NorthPort as it was its fourth straight, dropping it to a 2-4 record overall.
Meralco 126 – Newsome 28, Amer 23, Hodge 23, Salva 16, De Ocampo 15, Jackson 11, Quinto 4, Hugnatan 4, Pinto 2, Caram 0, Faundo 0.
NorthPort 123 – Pringle 33, Anthony 31, Tautuaa 21, Grey 15, Bolick 5, Taha 4, Elorde 4, Guinto 4, Flores 2, Arana 2, Sollano 2, Gabayni 0, Lanete 0.
Quarterscores: 28-22, 49-46, 76-72, 106-106, 113-113, 126-123.