BARANGAY Ginebra just pushed San Miguel on the brink of yielding its PBA Governors Cup title by moving a win away from reaching the championship round of the season-ending conference.
But for those who have short memories, coach Leo Austria has one important reminder to make.
The soft-spoken mentor pointed out how resilient the defending champion Beermen had been this season and their situation at the moment is nothing worse than what they went through earlier in the Philippine Cup.
“We’ve been in worse situation than this,” he said after a heartbreaking 97-96 loss to the Kings left SMB 1-2 down in the best-of-five series. “0-3, we’re able to comeback. This is a best-of-five so we still have to get two wins to get into the finals, so there’s lot of chances.”
The Beermen pulled off the greatest comeback yet in the 41-year history of the pro league just eight months ago when they rallied from a deep 0-3 hole and won the next four games of the all-Filipino finals to frustrate Alaska.
And Austria can’t see why his team can’t do it again.
The reigning Coach of the Year said breaks of the game decided the outcome of Friday night’s back-and-forth match played before a crowd of 14,523 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
He said everything was actually decided in the final 10 seconds when Ginebra went for the final shot, which Japeth Aguilar made at the buzzer following a jumper from about 10 feet.
“Imagine na-shoot pa nila yun, so that’s it,” he said. “They made the basket, that’s it.”
He credited both teams for playing hard, and it just so happened the game had to be settled on the final play of the night.
“Fifty-fifty yun, Kung pumasok panalo sila, kung di pumasok, panalo kami,” said Austria. “Kung di pumasok, goat sila, kung pumasok yun, hero sila. Ganun ang nangyari e.”
“There’s really nobody to be blame.”