ALASKA coach Alex Compton saw a bad omen even before Game One of the Smart Bro-PBA Philippine Cup semifinals got going.
The soft-spoken American mentor admitted the Aces had two straight great practices while preparing for the opener of their best-of-seven semifinal series against Globalport.
And he said more often than not, whenever he had such experience – be it with Alaska or any other team he became a part of – his team usually ended up on the losing side.
“I was scared coming into this game because we had back-to-back great practices,” said Compton, answering questions on whether the long layoff had an effect on the Aces in a 93-107 loss in Game One Monday night at the Mall of Asia Arena.
“And most of the time that I’ve been on teams that have had great practices, they come out flat,” he said. “We looked great the last two days and I’m worried really feeling good about ourselves.”
Compton’s worst fears came true as the Aces found themselves behind by a wide margin, 24-6, as early as the second quarter.
And though the top seeded team managed to cut the deficit to as close as 79-73, the Batang Pier played solidly in the stretch to turn back a last ditch effort by the Aces.
Compton was man enough to acknowledge the hardwork the Batang Pier put in on the way to winning their first ever game in the semis.
“That shouldn’t really take anything away from GlobalPort. I don’t know how many guys scored 40 points in a playoff like Terrence (Romeo) did. He was fantastic,” he said of the explosive guard who finished with a career-high 41 points.
“They deserve all the credit. They played really well, they beat us fair and square, they did an excellent job of maximizing their talent. I really thought they were solid and obviously Terrence ‘struggled’ today,” Compton smiled.