PHOENIX coach Louie Alas still likes the team’s chances of making the PBA Philippine Cup quarterfinals despite a close 92-90 loss to Meralco on Wednesday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
With a 4-5 (win-loss) record and two games left in its elimination round schedule, Alas is glad the Fuel Masters still have control of their own playoff destiny.
“May last two games kami and we do have control dun sa fate namin,” said the Phoenix mentor. “Ang control namin is yung manalo kami and to be in the quarterfinals. Yung tsansa namin nasa amin talaga.”
The Fuel Masters will face Blackwater and Globalport in their final two assignments.
Unfortunately, the loss to the Bolts dampened Phoenix’s shot ar landing one of four spots that will play a best-of-three series in the playoffs.
“Yung target ko to be in the Nos. 3 to 6 spots para sa best-of-three, 'yun hindi na namin kontrolado.”
It could have been a lot different had the Fuel Masters pulled this one off against the Bolts.
Phoenix rallied from as much as a 16-point first quarter deficit, lost grip of a five-point lead in the fourth, and then almost stole the win had Jeff Chan’s three-point attempt found its mark at the buzzer.
Alas said the final play was really designed for the veteran gunner.
“Kay Jeff talaga yung play,” he admitted. “Pero nakatanggap siya doon sa hindi niya sweet spot, so may kaunting angle na hindi namin nagawa.”
“It was just a one possession and pag ganyang one possession, kaunting angle lang ng mga instructions na hindi namin magagawa, it will cost us the game.”
And it did.