PBA: Abueva's clutch putback lifts Phoenix past Meralco in overtime

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, January 16) — The Phoenix Pulse Fuel Masters escaped the Meralco Bolts in overtime, 93-92, Wednesday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City.

Justin Chua dropped a game-high 24 points and six rebounds, while Matthew Wright added 18 points and 11 rebounds for the Fuel Masters.

A huge advantage at the rebounding department enabled Phoenix to establish a comfortable cushion at the end of the opening period.

The Fuel Masters continued to step on the gas and preserve the lead entering the halftime break.

Down by two points, Ranidel De Ocampo stepped up for Meralco as he scored a crucial bucket to tie the score and send the match into overtime.

Chris Newsome buried a cold-blooded triple to give the Bolts the lead at the dying moments of the game.

But a wild sequence saw Calvin Abueva score the game-winning putback with 4.1 seconds in the extra period. The 'Beast' had nine points and 13 rebounds for Phoenix in the contest.

Newsome tallied 20 points and five rebounds, while De Ocampo contributed 10 points for Meralco.

The Fuel Masters will next face the TNT KaTropa, while the Bolts clash with the Blackwater Elite on January 19 at the Ynares Center in Antipolo.

The scores:

Phoenix (93) – Chua 24, Wright 18, Perkins 13, Mallari 11, Abueva 9, Intal 8, Marcelo 6, Kramer 2, Jazul 2, Gamboa 0, Revilla 0, Mendoza 0, Dennison 0.

Meralco (92) – Salva 22, Newsome 20, Amer 10, De Ocampo 10, Hugnatan 9, Hodge 8, Faundo 4, Pinto 3, Tolomia 2, Quinto 2, Dillinger 2, Jackson 0, Canaleta 0, Caram 0, Jamito 0.

Quarterscores: 23-9; 41-34; 64-60; 83-83; 93-92.