IAN Sangalang stepped up when Magnolia needed him most in Game Three of its PBA Philippine Cup semifinal series against Rain or Shine.
Sangalang scored 12 of his 16 points in the fourth quarter to lift the Hotshots to an 85-74 victory over that kept the Elasto Painters from taking a commanding 3-0 lead in the best-of-seven series.
The former San Sebastian cager actually went scoreless in the first half, but encouraging words from the coaching staff as well as Magnolia veteran Marc Pingris enabled him to raise his game come crunch time.
“Nung first half, tinignan ko lang ‘yung sitwasyon kung ano puwedeng magawa ko. Wala akong nagawa nung first half. Pero nag-think positive lang ako nung second half,” said Sangalang, who also grabbed 11 boards as the Hotshots dominated the rebounding department, 71-39, in Game Three.
“’Yung mga coaching staff, sinabihan ako lalong lalo na si Kuya Ping na ni-lift up niya ako. Sobrang na-appreciate ko siya kung paano niya ako minotivate. Siguro nanggaling ‘yung laro ko kay Kuya Ping,” he added.
Sangalang said Pingris has always been there for guidance.
“Lagi naman niya akong sinasabihan na once na makuha mo ‘yung laro mo, babalik ka diyan, positive lang, kailangan ka sa team. Kailangan mag-focus ka diyan, wag mo na intindihin ‘yung mga ganyan. Sobrang lagi niya ako namo-motivate na kahit ‘yung role mahirap gampanan, tina-try ko ‘yung best ko,” said Sangalang.