PAUL Lee and Mark Barroca showed the way, but it was guys like Robbie Herndon who finished the job for Magnolia.
"When you're in a do-or-die situation like that, a lot of guys don't want their seasons to end yet," said Herndon after tallying 18 points and five rebounds in a 106-77 rout of Ginebra that sent their 2019 PBA Philippine Cup semifinal series to a deciding third game.
"I think we used that as a motivation, that we didn't want to go home yet and that's enough motivation for us."
Herndon was scorching hot in the second half, where he poured in 14 points to thwart any Ginebra attempt to get back in the game.
"Whenever we play Ginebra, you always think that it's gonna be a close game. But we just made sure that we didn't get comfortable. Yes, we're leading by 31, but we kept the pedal on the gas," he said.
The Hotshots started strongly and never wavered.
Shooting 44 percent from the floor and dropping 11 three-pointers on Ginebra the Hotshots went on an 11-0 opening salvo, hiked the lead to 51-38 at the half and led by as many as 31, 87-56, in the fourth period.
"Our offense had a good flow today," said Herndon, who went 8-of-14 from the floor. "That's just the confidence that I have in myself as a player. If I'm open, take the shot. The lanes were open for me today so I was able to get rebounds, putbacks, and fastbreaks."
Herndon, however, is well aware the Game Two win won't matter if the Hotshots can't get the job done in the do-or-die third game on Wednesday.
"We're confident, but we know the third game is gonna be a lot different than today's game," he said. "We can't be complacent, we can't be relaxed. You all remember the games last conference, so that's how the game is gonna be like on Wednesday."