COACH Alex Compton said San Miguel Beer’s imposing win over Alaska in Game Two has proven that the Beermen are still the “Goliath” in the pro league.
Compton and the rest of the Aces now hope to slay that Goliath in another expected physical collision in Game Three of their PBA Philippine Cup Finals on Sunday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Alaska opened the series with a come-from-behind 88-82 overtime win, but San Miguel came back with a vengeful 100-86 victory in Game Two.
“San Miguel Beer was the No. 1 team in the eliminations for a reason,” said Compton ahead of the 5 p.m. game. “They’re good. I know we won (Game One), but I didn’t feel that it changed the fact that they’re still the powerhouse team.
“We stole the game, and that was nice to steal one because it gave us a good chance, but we’re still facing the Goliath.”
Other than preparing tactically for Game Three, Compton hopes the Aces will come mentally tough, knowing that the series is bound to be a long-drawn physical match as seen from the rough and tumble Game Two.
Six players led by San Miguel’s Arwind Santos and Alaska’s Calvin Abueva, along with Aces assistant coach Louie Alas and Beermen utility staff Edwin Cortez, were summoned to appear before commissioner Chito Salud before Game Three for their involvement in the fight-marred Game Two.
Meantime, San Miguel coach Leo Austria said their aim at this point is to duplicate their defensive effort from Game Two while maintaining their energy against Alaska for 48 minutes.
“I’m happy for the players because their fighting spirit is there. They were able to catch up and even take the lead (in Game Two), but the turning point was the flagrant foul 1 called on Vic Manuel and I think, dun nag-rally ang mga players,” noted Austria, who is gunning for his first-ever PBA championship as a coach.