Meralco goes for first finals berth vs TNT in Game 4
TNT KaTropa may have its back on the wall, but the fight remains for the proud franchise.
No less than Texters star Jayson Castro was foremost among those who has not thrown in the towel, vowing his team will come back tonight against Meralco in their PBA Governors Cup semifinals duel at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Due to their 119-113 win in Game 3 last Saturday, their second straight in the best-of-five duel, the Bolts needs just one more to advance to their first-ever finals.
Not if Castro can help it. “Race-to-three ‘to, di ba? Kung sino unang makatatlo,” he said. “Matagal pa ang laban. Kaunting adjustments lang kailangan namin.”
Meralco coach Norman Black can only agree. “It’s a crucial win for us tonight, but it’s not over yet. We still have to win one more, but this is a big step for the Meralco team to take and try to get to the championship series for the first time ever,” he said after Game 3.
“We need one more. We need another effort like this to be able to realize our dream of making it to a first ever championship.”
Meralco has already made its own adjustments after getting beaten 95-113 in the series opener.
The Bolts tied the series up with a wire-to-wire 106-91 payback last Thursday, but were particularly hot in Game 3, making a franchise-record 17 three-point shots out of 28 attempts.
The Texters were not too far behind in triples by shooting 12-for-27 from deep, but could not match their foes’ poise, as exemplified by Jimmy Alapag, Chris Newsome and Allen Durham, in the stretch.
Reynel Hugnatan, who made only seven of 22 three-point shots in his first 14 games of the conference, suddenly went 5-for-6 in Game 3 in finishing with 21 points and backing up Durham’s 23 points, 13 rebounds and five assists for the night-
Alapag also made three triples, jacking his career total to 1,240 and moving him just three away from breaking Allan Caidic’s all-time league mark of 1,242.
Castro, however, remains defiant.'”Tingnan natin kung papasok pa rin yung mga outside shots nila next game,” said the ace playmaker.
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