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Ginebra holds off Meralco for QF edge

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Barangay Ginebra scored when it mattered most and repulsed Meralco Bolts, 88-81, in Game 1 of their best-of-three PBA Commissioner’s Cup quarterfinal series at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City on Monday night.

The Barangay held off the Bolts despite their import Justin Brownlee struggling to get his shots going early but actually made a booming triple that iced the game.

Following an impressive second quarter for Meralco to take a 45-38 halftime lead, Ginebra went on a 29-17 third quarter to go up, 67-62.

The game remained tight for most of the fourth quarter until the Barangay went on a 7-0 run to open an 84-76 lead with 2:06 remaining.

Meralco still threatened to inch closer, but Brownlee drilled in the dagger triple with 28 seconds left.

Brownlee, despite going 10-of-26 from the field, led Ginebra, which can clinch the series on Wednesday, with 25 points, nine rebounds, six assists, two steals, and two blocks.

Joe Devance added 14 points, two rebounds, and four assists, while Greg Slaughter chipped in 13 markers, seven rebounds, and one dime.

Baser Amer came off the bench to make 15 markers, three boards, five dimes, and two steals for Meralco. (PNA)