MERALCO settled for fourth place in the Fiba Asia Champions Cup after dropping a 91-87 decision to Korean side SK Knights on Tuesday at the Stadium 29 in Nonthaburi, Thailand.
The Knights went on a 17-0 run in the second quarter before shaking off a Bolts run in the third quarter to get the final podium place in the tournament.
The Bolts finished the Asian club competition with a 1-4 win-loss record, their solitary win coming against last year’s champion Al Riyadi in the preliminaries.
Meralco lost to Iran team Petrochimi in the semifinals.
Diamond Stone had 32 points and 13 rebounds while Allen Durham had 21 points, nine rebounds, and five assists for the undermanned Bolts.
Nino Canaleta added 15 points, his five triples helping the Bolts not only close the gap on the Knights but briefly take the lead at the end of the third quarter, 63-62.
Meralco, however, was unable to take advantage of SK Knights import DaJuan Summers fouling out in the fourth quarter. Choi Bukyung hit crucial jumpers including one that increased his team’s lead to 88-83.
Summers had 26 points, while An Youngjun and Kim Minsoo finished with 17 and 14 points, respectively, for the Korean team.
SK Knights 91 – Summers 26, An 17, Kim M. 14, Choi 13, Lee 11, Kim G. 2, Kim S. 0.
Meralco 87 – Stone 32, Durham 21, Canaleta 15, Amer 12, Lanete 3, Tolomia 2, Caram 2, Atkins 0, Hugnatan 0.
Quarters: 25-27; 45-38; 62-63; 91-87.