ALASKA coach Alex Compton expressed pride in his players' determination despite tough odds against San Miguel as the Aces finally nailed a victory in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup semifinals.
Compton hopes they can sustain it in Game Four as they seek to force a rubber match against the Beermen on Sunday night at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
The match is set at 7 p.m.
Alaska prevented a San Miguel sweep after the Aces beat the Beermen in Game Three on Friday night at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City.
“To tell you what guys, I love my guys,” said Compton. “You heard me say it before. I love my guys. They don’t give up. We’re down 2-0 against the best team in the league, there’s every possibility to give up but they didn’t.”
Vic Manuel and Diamon Simpson showed the way for the Aces, but the second stringers led by Abel Galliguez, Noy Baclao, and Jake Pascual contributed huge in the Game Three victory.
“’Yun ang hiningi ko sa kanila. Lalaban tayo hanggang sa huli. Lumaban sila. You know we have to play great to beat San Miguel,” Compton said.
At 2-1, coach the Beermen are still in firm control, but coach Leo Austria warned the players they can't take things lightly.
“Bale twice-to-beat kami ngayon,” Austria said. “It happens in the quarterfinals before na No. 1 , No. 2 (twice-to-beat). Now, hindi na quarterfinals. This is semifinals and we don't want this to put into waste.”
Renaldo Balkman and June Mar Fajardo had double-doubles, but the Beermen also hopes Arwind Santos will break out of the slump after scoring just three points and going 0-for-7 from the field.