MANILA, Philippines – B-Meg Derby Ace hammered out an 88-83 win over Meralco despite playing a sloppy game in the PBA Governors Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The Llamados had to rely on import Marcus Blakely and Marc Pingris down the stretch to survive from their numerous turnovers.
Fortunately for B-Meg, Meralco was shooting miserably, giving the Llamados their third-straight win.
"I'm happy we won, but I'm not pleased with our performance," said B-Meg coach Tim Cone in PBA.ph, referring to their 21 turnovers.
"We did not play a good game tonight," he added. "Still the guys hung in there and gave themselves a chance to win down the stretch. But we were sloppy, not giving much attention to detail."
Blakely came up with a game-high 31 points, with 8 of them in the final period.
Pingris, meanwhile, scored B-Meg’s last 7 points to pull his team out of an 81-83 bind just over 2 minutes left in the game.
Cone said his team may have been on vacation mode since it won the PBA Commissioner's Cup title.
"We have a team that's relaxing and not bringing it their all right now," stated Cone. "I'm truly disappointed. We can't play like this and expect to continue to win."
Outgoing Meralco import Champ Oguchi finished the game with just 12 points, missing all of his 10 attempts from beyond the arc.
Oguchi, who used to average 28.3 points for Meralco, will be replaced by former Atlanta Hawks player Mario West.
It was Macmac Cardona who topscored for the Bolts with 27 points, while teammate Chris Ross had a personal conference-high 18 points.
However, Meralco only scored 32-for-82 from the field, including a 1-for-19 three-point shooting.
B-Meg 88 - Blakely 31, Yap 19, Pingris 10, De Ocampo 9, Villanueva 6, Urbiztondo 5, Intal 4, Reavis 4, Acuna 0, Barroca 0.
Meralco 83 - Cardona 27, Ross 18, Oguchi 12, Taulava 11, Mercado 8, Hugnatan 4, Bulawan 2, Reyes 1, Daa 0, Macapagal 0, Artadi 0.
Quarterscores: 19-17, 40-39, 66-66, 88-83