Austria’s fears came true in Beermen loss to Hotshots
San Miguel coach Leo Austria braced for the worst heading into the Beermen’s quarterfinal matchup against the Star Hotshots.
Austria had fears knowing what the Hotshots are capable of and on Monday, his nightmares came true.
“Yung kinatatakutan ko, nangyari kanina,” he said after the top seed Beermen fell to Star, 108-99 in Game 1 of their 2016 Oppo PBA Commissioner’s Cup quarterfinals duel.
Outworked and outhustled all game long, San Miguel found the wrong time to misfire from three-point country, going 10-of-43 from threes for a paltry 23 percent shooting.
Though import Tyler Wilkerson finished with 22 points and 14 rebounds, he did go on a dry spell, firing blanks from his eight attempts from trey. That pales in comparison to the dominating performance shown by Hotshots’ Ricardo Ratliffe, who went for 33 points and 29 rebounds in a do-or-die game for Star.
Austria noted, “I think yun yung big factor, yung work ethic nung import nila unlike sa amin na mukhang walang pinakita eh.”
“Yung tao ni (Wilkerson), laging in front of him, that’s why I asked him to stay at the post, but he kept on going out in the perimeter. Sabi ko, kailangan high-percentage because kung titignan mo yung mga championship na pinanalo namin, priority namin is big man at the post,” he said.
“Sana ma-realize nya na this is playoff time and he cannot take any shot easily dahil scouted na sya ng any team, just like what happened in our game versus Ginebra.”
It also didn’t help San Miguel was out-rebounded, 62-50.
Collectively, Austria is hopeful that the Beermen will go to their strengths, just like what the Hotshots did on Game 1, and avoid a quarterfinals upset.
“It’s our attitude and discipline. Mukhang nawawala na eh,” he said. “Let’s see on Wednesday. I hope this will be a wake up call for us.”
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