ANTIPOLO CITY – Mike Ayonayon again served as sparkplug for Blackwater, but his late heroics failed to save the Bossing in an overtime loss to Meralco, 102-98, in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup on Friday.
Ayonayon was tapped by coach Ariel Vanguardia to enter the game with seven minutes left and the Bossing trailing, 82-70.
Immediately, the 29-year-old guard did what was asked of him and rallied the Bossing by forcing the game into an extra period.
He scored nine of his 11 points in the final quarter, highlighted by two three-pointers and the floater with 1.2 seconds to go that knotted the count at 89 at the end of regulation.
“Eksakto lang kasi ako yung laging nao-open. Akala ng Meralco, siyempre malamig ako (coming off the bench), sakto lang naman nasu-shoot ko yung mga tira ko,” said the soft-spoken guard.
The role is nothing new to Ayonayon.
He also came off the bench and led Blackwater past San Miguel Beer in a 109-106 win earlier in the conference.
Not that he’s complaining, but Ayonayon hopes the next time he’ll be utilized, it would be earlier in the game and not when Blackwater is trying to overcome a large margin.
“Natataon lang naman siguro na sa akin, pero sana mas earlier pa para hindi naman sana ganun kalaki yung hahabulin,” he said. “Ako naman always ready ako kahit konting minutes lang ako gamitin ni coach. Wala namang problema dun.”
The chances are becoming few for Blackwater.
The setback dragged the Bossing further down the standings at 3-7 as they suffered a fourth straight loss.