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Robert Bolick Saves the Day

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Lucky to have Bolick: The NLEX guard takes over late in the game to help them win

Frankie Lim, the head coach of NLEX, breathed a sigh of relief as Robert Bolick led the Road Warriors to another tough win.

As the game entered the fourth quarter, Bolick took over and led NLEX to a 99–96 win over Meralco in the PBA Philippine Cup at the Araneta Coliseum on March 6. He scored 26 points, 8 rebounds, and 4 assists. 

Bolick was held to 10 points in the first three quarters but scored 16 in the fourth quarter to help the Road Warriors come back from a double-digit lead and win their second game in a row.

“We’re lucky to have Bolick. Just imagine if he is not on our team,” said Lim in Filipino. 

“I want to look at it as a team effort. Each player made contributions. But of course, he is special.”

With less than seven minutes left, a Chris Newsome free throw gave the Bolts a 10-point lead, 85–75. But Bolick went on a scoring spree, scoring all four points in a 12–4 run that brought his team within 89–87. 

After Dominick Fajardo set up Robbie Herndon for a three-pointer, NLEX took the lead 90–89. But Bolick made four free throws in a row to give the Road Warriors the lead 98–91. 

But Meralco didn’t give up. They scored five straight points to get within 98-96, and rookie Enoch Valdez missed two free throws with less than 15 seconds left, giving them a chance to force overtime. 

But Newsome missed the three-point shot that would have tied the game, and the Bolts lost their second game in a row. 

Bolick had 12 points, 6 rebounds, and 3 steals from Valdez, who played defense, and Jhan Nermal scored 11 points. 

But Bolick reserved his best praise for Herndon and Fajardo, who did a great job even though they had little to do at this conference. 

Herndon scored 9 points, grabbed 4 rebounds, and stole 2 balls. Fajardo, who missed the first two games, scored 6 points and grabbed 3 rebounds.

“Shout out to Dom and Robbie. They gave us something extraordinary this game. The two won this game for us,” said Bolick.

Newsome had 22 points, 8 rebounds, and 4 assists in another close loss. Blackwater was Meralco’s first conference game a week ago, and the team lost by just 3 points. 

Raymond Almazan scored 13 points and grabbed 7 rebounds in his first game in the conference after missing the first two games with the flu. Allein Maliksi scored 12 points and grabbed 4 rebounds for Meralco.

The Scores

NLEX 99

  • Bolick 26
  • Valdez 12
  • Nermal 11
  • Herndon 9
  • Semerad 9
  • Marcelo 7
  • Miranda 7
  • Fajardo 6
  • Nieto 5
  • Amer 3
  • Pascual 2
  • Ular 2

 

Meralco 96

  • Newsome 22
  • Jose 14
  • Almazan 13
  • Maliksi 12
  • Hodge 10
  • Torres 9
  • Black 5
  • Quinto 5
  • Banchero 4
  • Rios 2
  • Mendoza 0
  • Caram 0
  • Pascual 0

 

Quarters: 26-28, 51-43, 64-72, 99-96.

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