Shorthanded Alaska still good enough to beat Meralco in final tune-up before PBA season
Cyrus Baguio scored 20 points to lead an Alaska team still without Sonny Thoss, Dondon Hontiveros, Calvin Abueva and Vic Manuel. Jerome Ascano

A SHORTHANDED Alaska survived a late Meralco comeback to hack out a 92-90 win in their last tune-up game of the preseason on Thursday at Hoops Center.

Still without resting Gilas boys Dondon Hontiveros and Sonny Thoss as well as Calvin Abueva, who is abroad with Vic Manuel for the Fiba 3x3 World Tour, the Aces built an early lead that cushioned a second-half rally by the Bolts.

Cyrus Baguio put up a game-high 20 points, while defensive-minded Noy Baclao shone offensively too with 16 markers, all but one in the first half.

“Meralco beat us solidly in the second half. It’s just that our lead was too big in the first half to overcome it,” Aces coach Alex Compton said after the game. “But they really outplayed us in the second half.”

Gary David and Chris Newsome registered 15 points apiece to lead Meralco.

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