Hotshots, Bolts eye to stretch winning run

Defending champion Magnolia and Meralco eye to stretch their winning streak when they clash against their respective foes tonight in Season 44 Philippine Basketball Association Governors’ Cup at the Araneta Coliseum.

The Hotshots (2-1 win-loss record) will meet win-less Alaska in the 6:45 p.m. second game while the Bolts will tangle with Phoenix Pulse at 4:30 p.m.

Magnolia import Romeo Travis shoots over Jewel Ponferada of Rain or Shine during a Season 44 PBA Governors’ Cup game on Friday at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City. PBA MEDIA BUREAU PHOTO

The Hotshots, under coach Chito Victolero, scored a slim 69-68 win over Rain or Shine on Friday.

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“That’s a big win for us because we have back-to-back games. No time to celebrate and we need to prepare against Alaska,” said Victolero.

Victolero stressed that they are not overly conscious on Alaska being win-less and Magnolia enjoying a winning streak.

“Hindi namin kailangan tingnan ‘yung win-loss record, focus kami sa dapat laruin namin (We don’t need to focus on their win-loss record, we just want to focus on our game),” added Victolero.

Import Romeo Travis finished with 26 points and 14 rebounds in their last game.

Alaska, under its new coach Jeffrey Cariaso, is yet to notch a victory after four games.

Frank House, who replaced injured Justin Watts, registered a measly eight points 11 rebounds, six assists and two blocks in his debut. Alaska suffered a 75-101 loss to Meralco also last Friday.

Meanwhile, the Bolts have improved their win-loss record to 2-1 after crushing the Aces behind Baser Amer’s 27 points and Allen Durham’s near triple-double of 25 points, 15 rebounds and nine assists.

“Swerte lang at good start ako. Kailangan maging aggressive pa rin ako hindi lang sa offense pati na rin sa defense (I’m lucky to have a good start. I need to be more aggressive not only in offense but also in defense),” said Amer.

In Dubai, San Miguel Beer dealt Northern Luzon Expressway (NLEX) its first loss, 78-74, on Friday (early Saturday morning in Manila) at the Coca-Cola Arena.

Dez Wells registered 22 of his 32 points in the second half, including some clutch baskets, to give the Beermen a 3-0 win-loss record.

The Road Warriors’ record dropped to 3-1.

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