SAN Miguel simply refused to dwell on a Game One defeat to TNT that was clinched by Jayson Castro's buzzer-beater, completing TNT’s comeback from 15 points down.
Head coach Leo Austria said the Beermen made an effort to move on quickly from the defeat, chalk up the Castro winner as part of the breaks of the game, and simply focus on the next match.
“’Yung first game, talagang masakit para sa amin,” said Austria. “We were leading by 15 points in the first half. After the first half, 12 points [in the third quarter]. Then, all of a sudden, nag-collapse kami nung third quarter.
"We were able to regroup. 84-84, nagkaroon kami ng chance na manalo. But unfortunately, hindi namin na-score ‘yung last possession namin, and then nagkaroon ng maraming incident sa 1.6 seconds.”
Austria said the Beermen didn't make a single complaint about the outcome or the table officials' decision to count the Castro basket.
“The committee decided, we respect. Wala kayong maririnig sa amin dahil that’s the name of the game. We have to follow what the rule is,” said Austria after the Beermen regrouped to take a 109-100 Game Two victory on Wednesday.
Chris Ross also shared the same sentiment as Austria, saying it wasn't the first time the Beermen were stung by a game-winner at the buzzer.
“There’s nothing you can do about it, right? It’s not the first time we lost a buzzer-beater in the finals. I think Japeth might have hit a buzzer beater on us in the finals before. Even against these guys, it wasn’t a buzzer beater but Josh Smith (TNT import) hit the game-winner. I think it was Game One as well.”
“You just have to move on. You’ve got to have a short memory. You can’t change the call. You can’t protest. Whatever. You just have to move on,” said Ross.
Austria said the Game One defeat was actually a wake-up call for the Beermen.
“We have to be focused, maybe because of that incident, ‘yung pride ng players, biglang nagising. They worked hard for this game. I’m so happy for them dahil everybody, naka-focus eh,” said Austria.
Ross said the Beermen simply decided not to sulk over the Game One loss.
“It’s a seven-game series. You move on and try to win the next one. That’s what we did [in Game Two]. We have to be even better in Game Three because they are going to make adjustments. We have to be even better and come out with a lot more energy and more focus and try to win another,” said Ross.
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