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Durnham's 46 shoulder Bolts to draw first blood over Ginebra

Meralco has defied the odds to take the first win of the Best-of-Seven finals bout against Ginebra.

And it was all because of Allen "AD" Durnham.

Durnham provided the spark for Meralco, tallying an electrifying 46 points, 13 rebounds, and seven assists to lead the Bolts to escape the crowd-favorite Barangay Ginebra Kings in overtime, 114-109, at the jampacked Smart-Araneta Coliseum, on Friday.

Durnham widened the score gap in the decisive set, cruising an early 7-0 run in the overtime, with rookie Chris Newsome sealing it with two sure shots from the line.

Though majority of the audience were Ginebra fans, the Bolts fought with their hearts, shooting crucial baskets to stay on their winning momentum that Durham had established since the first quarter.

Meralco almost had it all in the fourth quarter after veteran guard Jimmy Alapag hit a dagger three from the left wing, 101-100, but Tenorio later denied the Bolts after stopping their momentum with a turnover from Reynel Hugnatan and hitting a floater with 2 seconds remaining to force an overtime at 102-all.

But AD was just totally unstoppable, still had enough gas to keep going in the overtime period, to formally end the regulation, dismaying the Gin Kings as the Bolts took Game 1 in their very first Finals appearance in the league.

Locals Hugnatan, Newsome and Alapag combined for 45 markers to help Durnham to narrow down the gap that the Kings have made in the mid-third quarter, from 15 points down to only five before they entered the last frame.

On the other hand, Tenorio paced the Kings with 36 points, with 20 coming from the first half, and Justin Brownlee with only 17.

The Game two is set on Sunday, October 9, still at the same venue.


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