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    Magnolia protecting lead vs SMB makes Barroca wish it was Game 7 of finals

    Jun 27, 2019
    PHOTO: edward solo

    HOW Mark Barroca wishes this was Game 7 of the PBA Philippine Cup Finals.

    But reality check says it’s just the elimination of the Commissioner’s Cup and Magnolia’s 118-82 rout of San Miguel Beer on Wednesday night is just an added number to the Hotshots’ win-loss record.

    Still, Barroca said he’ll take the victory if it is just to ease the pain of having lost the championship of the All-Filipino conference to this mighty Beermen.

    “Kanina nga sabi namin sana ito na lang nangyari nung Finals nung Game 7,” said Barroca of the 36-point blowout win, the worse suffered by San Miguel since a 109-68 rout against guest team Smart Gilas Pilipinas in the 2011 Commissioner’s Cup.

    Barroca of course, was referring to the winner-take-all game between the Hotshots and Beermen in which San Miguel rallied back from 17 points down to escape with a 72-71 win and take the title.

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    “Kasi ganun yung nangyari nung finals di ba. Up by 17 kami tapos bumalik,” he recalled.

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      The veteran guard from Zamboanga made sure no comeback would happen this time as he led Magnolia’s locals with 17 points on a near-flawless 5-of-6 shooting from three-point range. He also had four rebounds, nine assists, and two steals.

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      The win somehow helped Magnolia to get even against its tormentor.

      “Nanalo kami ngayon, yun ang motivation namin. Masaya rin kami, magaan sa amin ring (kalooban),” said Barroca.

      The victory was the fourth straight for the Hotshots, who continue to climb the standings with their 4-2 record for solo third place.

      Barroca however, said this isn’t the time for Magnolia to lower its guards down, pointing out how last year in this same tournament, the Hotshots finished the eliminations with a 6-5 record and yet, ended up only as the seventh-seeded team heading into the playoff where they were bundled out by Alaska.

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      “Ngayon nag-iipon talaga kami ng panalo. Kasi tulad nung last year, ayaw namin yung ganun ang mangyari,” he said

      Magnolia will travel to Zamboanga on Thursday for its Saturday road game against Meralco.

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      PHOTO: edward solo
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