JONG Uichico hopes his shooters regain their touch as Tropang TNT seeks to keep its title-retention bid alive in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup in do-or-die Game Three of their quarterfinal series against Alaska on Friday at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
The Texters lost to the Aces, 85-81, in Game Two that sent the best-of-three series to a deciding game after Jayson Castro and Troy Rosario, among others, fired blanks from beyond the arc.
The defending champions actually shot better overall than the Aces did at 43 percent (31-of-72), compared to Alaska’s 38-percent (30-of79) shooting.
The problem was three-point shooting as Castro missed all his nine three-point attempts, while Rosario botched his four tries, including the potential game-winner, after making seven conversions in the series opener.
Ranidel De Ocampo accounted for three, while Dylan Ababou contributed the other three-point basket out of the Texters’ 24 attempts in all for a dismal 17 percent.
“If we had made some three-point shots, the game would’ve been different,” Uichico said. “Pero may mga games na ganun na you can’t buy a basket.”
“Aside from the turnovers, that’s the story of the game,” added the champion coach, whose team committed 25 errors.
The Aces, on other hand, seek to sustain their defensive intensity in the 7 p.m. encounter where the winner will face Meralco in the semifinals.
“I certainly hope we can keep TNT to eighty-one points, but sa tingin ko medyo mahirap yun,” Aces coach Alex Compton said. “We have to come up with some new look on offense that can get us some easier baskets.”