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    Tue, Sep 27
    Leo Austria and the Beermen try to bounce back, while Norman Black and the Bolts seek a second straight win.

    TOP seed San Miguel and highly-motivated Meralco go at it one last time on Wednesday with the last finals berth of the PBA Philippine Cup at stake.

    The Beermen and Bolts tangle in a do-or-die Game Seven at the Smart Araneta Coliseum for the right to face defending champion TNT in the best-of-seven title series that begins on Sunday.

    Gametime is 6 p.m.

    See: Aaron Black sparks 16-2 finishing kick vs SMB as Meralco stays alive

    The You-or-I encounter was forged after the Bolts battled back from a 10-point deficit in the fourth quarter of Game Six behind a 16-2 run going home instigated by guard Aaron Black.

    As the smoke of battle cleared, Meralco emerged the victor, 96-92, to level the series at 3-3, while leaving the entire San Miguel unit dumbfounded on what exactly hit the team.

    Veteran guard Chris Ross referred to the endgame collapse as a ‘learning experience.’



      “We’ve got guys out there that haven’t been in that position yet. It’s a learning experience for them, it’s a learning experience for all of us,” he said.

      “It’s a semis series between two really good teams,” added Ross. “It is what it is. We just got to play. We just got to figure it out.”

      Watch Now

      San Miguel coach Leo Austria begged off from a post-Game Six interview as the Beermen try to regroup in a bid to save their season.

      Aaron Black, SMB vs MeralcoNo team has won two straight in this Meralco-San Miguel series.


      For Meralco, it’s another shot at earning a first ever trip to the Philippine Cup finals, a feat it came close to achieving two years ago in the Clark bubble if not for Scottie Thompson delivering the dagger three-pointer for the win, 83-80, as Barangay Ginebra advanced.

      That wasn’t lost on coach Norman Black.

      “We’ve been only this close to making the all-Filipino finals one time before this and that’s when we lost to Ginebra at the buzzer, with Scottie hitting that three-point shot,” said the Meralco mentor.

      “Now we get another chance of possibly getting to the finals of the all-Filipino. It’s a big step for our franchise and now we just have to dig a little bit deeper to try to get there because we know we’re up against a tough team.”

      A quick footnote. Meralco had booted out San Miguel in the playoffs twice in the last three conferences, eliminating the Beermen in the Philippine Cup Clark bubble despite a twice-to-beat advantage in the quarterfinals, and then ousting them during the last Governors Cup quarterfinals as well.


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      Leo Austria and the Beermen try to bounce back, while Norman Black and the Bolts seek a second straight win.
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