SMB takes down Meralco, levels PBA finals at 2-2

Posted by watchmen
June 14, 2024
Posted in SPORTS


San Miguel Beermen’s June Mar Fajardo’s shot attempt was foiled by Meralco Bolts’ Clifford Hodge. (PBA photo)
San Miguel Beermen’s June Mar Fajardo’s shot attempt was foiled by Meralco Bolts’ Clifford Hodge. (PBA photo)


The San Miguel Beermen (SMB) banked on their experience in the endgame to defeat the Meralco Bolts, 111-101, in Game 4 of the 2024 PBA Philippine Cup finals at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Wednesday night, June 12.

After the Bolts rallied to 85-88 with over eight minutes left, the Beermen got consecutive hits from Terrence Romeo, Moala Tautuaa, Jaymar Perez, and Marcio Lassiter to increase their lead to 97-88.

Meralco rallied to within six points several times in the final minutes, but SMB answered back with free throws from Perez and Fajardo as they widened the advantage to 111-95 with less than a minute left.

Fajardo led the Beermen with a double-double of 28 points and 13 rebounds, Perez added 22 points, while Lassiter unloaded four three-pointers to end up with 18 markers as they tied the best-of-seven series at 2-2.

“It’s a great win for us, but we just tied the series and made it a best-of-three,” Beermen head coach Jorge Gallent said.

“We just talk to one another, to trust each other and share the ball, and we got 111 points,” he added.

Chris Newsome finished with a career-high of 40 points, Chris Banchero added 21 markers, while Clifford Hodge ended with a double-double of 17 points and 10 rebounds for the Bolts.

Prior to the game, Fajardo received his 10th career PBA Best Player of the Conference award following his dominant performance for the Beermen in the ongoing PBA Philippine Cup.

The Cebu province’s Pinamungajan-native Fajardo clinched the award after attaining a total of 1,100 points — 472 points from statistics, 514 from media votes and 114 from player votes.

The seven-time PBA Most Valuable Player winner accumulated 43.12 statistical points with his averages of 17.3 points, 14.5 rebounds and 3.1 assists through the semifinals round.

The 6-foot-10 Fajardo bested Beermen teammate Jaymar Perez, Barangay Ginebra San Miguel Kings’ Christian Standhardinger, Terrafirma Dyip’s Stephen Holt, and NLEX Road Warriors’ Robert Bolick, Jr. for the individual award./ASC, WDJ

SAN MIGUEL 111 — Fajardo 28, Perez 22, Lassiter 18, Tautuaa 9, Manuel 8, Trollano 8, Romeo 7, Ross 6, Cruz 5, Teng 0, Brondial 0.

MERALCO 101 — Newsome 40, Banchero 21, Hodge 17, Maliksi 9, Quinto 6, Bates 4, Almazan 2, Rios 2, Caram 0, Torres 0.

Quarterscores: 29-22, 51-40, 82-74, 111-101.

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