WHILE it’s easy for him to sport any kind of hairstyle from long, blonde, brushed-up hair to buzz cut, it’s hard for Chris Banchero to figure out how to stop Alaska’s uncharacteristic losing streak.
Despite his and the rest of his teammates’ best efforts, the Aces remained winless in five games in the PBA Governors’ Cup and reeled to their 13th straight loss overall following another heartbreaking defeat, 111-106, in double overtime at the hands of Blackwater on Wednesday.
The Aces rallied from 11 points down halfway through the fourth quarter and kept it a see-saw affair in the extra sessions, only to see the Elite make the shots that mattered most in the second overtime.
The loss left Banchero searching for answers.
“Another one-possession game we lost and just didn’t get the job done again,” Banchero said after being one of the last Aces to emerge from the dugout. “Just…just…I don’t even know what to say anymore.”
Asked what he feels it will take to finally put an end to the franchise-worst losing streak, Banchero could also only wonder.
“I wish I knew, man,” the veteran playmaker said. “I think we just need to play smarter basketball. I mean, we’re playing hard, but it’s coming down to these one-possession games. There’s nothing to say, man. We need to get the job done – no excuse, no nothing. We got to take care of this.”
Banchero chipped in 10 points on a dismal 4-of-17 shooting, although he added five boards, two assists, two blocks, one steal, and zero turnover in 30 minutes. One of his two blocks came at the expense of Roi Sumang, denying the Elite guard’s layup attempt that could’ve won the game for Blackwater in the first overtime.
Banchero, however, missed a late triple in the second extra sessions that could’ve tied the game and sent the game into a third overtime.
“But there are so many things in the first three quarters that we allowed to happen,” Banchero insisted. “We came out flat today in a game we needed to win. We finally picked it up, and they’re playing well, so you got to give it to them.”
“We just need to get the job done on Saturday,” he added, referring their next game on Saturday, against Ginebra in Cebu. “We keep losing these close games. It comes down to the endgame.”