BOBBY Ray Parks gave credit to a long road trip for helping San Miguel Alab Pilipinas forge chemistry and camaraderie that has led to the team's surge in the Asean Basketball League (ABL).
Alab is on a roll with wins in five consecutive games, with four of those victories coming on the road and capped by the 82-69 victory over Singapore in the Slingers’ home court at the OCBC Arena.
Overall, it is Alab’s fifth straight win on the road after six tries, four of its road games coming since January.
The Alab gunner and reigning ABL MVP said playing on the road has brought out the best in the team, addingthe family atmosphere has helped them win games away from home.
“The thing is, being on the road, it brings us together,” Parks said. “We are handling adversity, we are handling the travelling, we are not at home. Nasa ibang country kami na magkakapatid, isang pamilya na pumunta doon for a business trip."
Head coach Jimmy Alapag agreed.
“When you travel together, you go through experiences on the road. You go into a hostile environment. The great thing about the ABL is you really feel the home and away. It’s a challenge but it’s also a great opportunity for the teams to build chemistry and camaraderie,” he said.
The Alab coach also noted that he road trip proved timely in helping new imports Justin Brownlee and Renaldo Balkman forge a strong bond with the rest of the team.
“This past month, we were able to get a chance to do that with [build chemistry and camaraderie] with Balkman and Justin coming in,” said Alapag.
“They were focused and ready to work. Seeing the team grow, it’s fun to watch. They really enjoy playing out there and playing with one another,” he added.
Alab finally won at home on Wednesday in an overtime victory against Chong Son Kung Fu, the second-ranked team in the league. Parks said the road games played a big role as they overcame a tough match against Chong Son to pull off the win at home for only the second consecutive time.
“It’s good that we went through this and battle adversity here. We were able to overcome it,” said Parks.
“Sobrang thankful kami na sinusuportahan kami ng Sta. Rosa. Ilang beses na kaming bumalik dito. Pangit man sabihin na parang minamalas kami dito pero everything, the mentality, it’s just good that we were able to give the people of Sta. Rosa the win,” said Parks.