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    Undermanned Alaska tries to even semis series with San Miguel

    Jul 16, 2018
    PHOTO: Jerome Ascano

    ALASKA seeks to tie the best-of-five semifinal series against San Miguel in Game Two of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup on Monday night at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.

    The match is scheduled at 7 p.m.

    Coach Alex Compton hopes Alaska will be able to limit mistakes as San Miguel has the ability to pounce on those errors.

    “Our guys played hard. But, we just have to be so sharp. Our mental errors, they got to be, I won't say cut in half, but they need to be drastically limited for us to win some games,” said Compton.

    Alaska is hoping to defy the odds against a San Miguel squad that had six players in double figures — with June Mar Fajardo, Alex Cabagnot and Renaldo Balkman delivering their usual numbers.

    Chris Banchero is doubtful for Game Two after a family emergency, an added blow to an Alaska side already without Calvin Abueva.

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      Kelly Nabong and Christian Standhardinger also contributed big for San Miguel in the series opener, and coach Leo Austria hopes they can stay sharp.

      Prior to the Game One victory, the Beermen lost in to the Aces in a match in Dumaguete with Vic Manuel hitting a buzzer-beating shot.

      “I address it to the team na we have a history and that history is always a motivation para sa team. Because of our experience, because of our camaraderie and pride ng player, ayaw nilang patalo eh. Makikita niyo na talagang they are really focused on this game,” said Austria.

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      In Game One, Manuel scored 16 points, ending a streak of 11 games with 20 or more points. Compton, however, remained satisfied with the play of their ‘Muscleman.’

      “I’m still a believer. It ain’t easy. I don’t think any of you guys put that much money down on Alaska to win the series. But we’re gonna fight like we did,” said Compton.

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        PHOTO: Jerome Ascano
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