IT takes an undermanned lineup that’s backed against the wall to bring out the desire in Star to simply win.
Missing James Yap and Ian Sangalang to injures and on the brink of elimination, the Hotshots finally mustered enough effort to get back on the winning track in the PBA Governors’ Cup as they survived Meralco, 104-103, on Sunday night.
Joel Wright may have scored the game-winner, but PJ Simon and Marc Pingris also came through in the clutch for the Hotshots to snap their longest losing streak in over a decade.
“Napakalaking bagay ‘to para sa amin,” Simon said. “It’s a character game para sa amin ‘to.”
“I’m really proud sa mga teammates ko na hindi talaga nag-give up at lumaban talaga,” Simon added as his team preserved the result after squandering a 14-point lead in the fourth quarter.
Simon left an imprint as he scored half of his 16 points in the final frame as the Hotshots stayed alive in the playoff race even after winning for only the second time in nine games.
“Siguro ngayon, kahit na pinakita lang namin na sobrang mahirap na maging positive dahil sa sitwasyon, pero pinakita pa rin namin na positive pa rin,” said Simon, who shot 7-of-13 from the field and added four boards and one assist in 32 minutes. “Hangga’t may konting chance, talagang nilaban namin yung one percent na yun.”
“Napakadaling gumive-up: yun yung pinakamadaling gawin pag out ka na, but siguro tonight, yung turnaround talaga kung bakit kami nanalo is talagang nilaban namin kahit maliit lang na chance,” he added.