KENT Salado admitted Javee Mocon was not among the top concerns of Racal heading into the do-or-die match against Cignal-San Beda for the PBA D-League Aspirants’ Cup title on Thursday.
The Tile Masters gambled in leaving Mocon open to lock down on the Hawkeyes’ other offensive threats like Jason Perkins and Robert Bolick. But after hardly making an impact in the first two games of the best-of-three finals, the fourth-year San Beda cager made Racal pay.
Averaging just 3.5 points heading to the decider, Mocon dropped 14 of his 25 points in the payoff period to help the Hawkeyes claim their maiden title at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig. And Salado had nothing but praise for their NCAA
"Hindi namin napansin si Mocon. Siya yung pumatay sa amin nung fourth quarter. Hindi namin in-expect," said Salado when he emerged from the team's dugout.
"Kasi nung first and second (games) wala siya e. Nung fourth quarter (ng Game Three) siya na lahat e. Pinabayan namin siya kasi di sya gumawa nung first at second," he added.
Salado, though, refused to dwell on the loss. After all, the Tile Masters made history after making the finals for the first time.
"Proud ako kasi nakatulong ako sa team na first time na nanalo sa semis at first time pumasok sa finals. History nga e," he said.