JEREMY LIN (R) alongside his brother Joseph. —WWW.EASL.BASKETBALL

MERALCO faltered amid the fourth-quarter surge of Jeremy Lin and the New Taipei Kings as it yielded a 92-97 loss in an East Asia Super League  (EASL) road game Wednesday night at the Xinzhuang Gymnasium.

The Bolts actually had control in the first 30 minutes of play before nine-year NBA veteran Mr. Lin spearheaded a late run that sent the home squad to a comfortable 94-85 cushion.

Mr. Lin, owner of an NBA ring with the Raptors in 2019, posted 25 points, seven assists and four rebounds to lead the P.League+ side to its second win in as many games in Group B.

He was complemented by import Kenny Manigault, who produced a 19-11 double-double statline, and former Bay Area Dragons player Hayden Blankley, who chipped in 15 spiked by three triples.

“Linsanity” and his teammates spoiled the debut of Meralco’s new reinforcement Zach Lofton, who torched the hoops with 35 markers.

Mr. Lofton’s partner-import Prince Ibeh contributed 18 and six for the Meralco Bolts, who fell to 0-2 to stay at the cellar. “I thought we did a good job at the start. But we encountered matchup difficulties with their bigger lineup and allowed them to get a lot of rebounds,” said Meralco coach Luigi Trillo, who also drew twin-digit scoring from Chris Newsome (16) and Anjo Caram (10). — Olmin Leyba

The Scores
New Taipei Kings 97 – Je. Lin 25, Manigault 19, Blankley 15, Kee 8, Anigwe 8, Yang 7, Jo. Lin 6, Davis 5, Su 4, Chen 0.

Olmin Leyba – Lofton 35, Ibeh 18, Newsome 16, Caram 10, Hodge 5, Banchero 4, Quinto 2, Almazan 2, Rios 0, Torres 0.

Quarterscores: 25-30; 45-48; 65-66; 97-92.