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    Manuel hopes Alaska can make late playoff push like Meralco did last Govs' Cup

    Oct 7, 2019
    PHOTO: Jerome Ascaño

    IN Alaska’s five losses, three of which were blowouts, in the PBA Governors’ Cup, Vic Manuel considers Sunday’s defeat against Magnolia as the most difficult one to take. At the same time though, he sees positive signs for the Aces as they try to finally break into the winning column.

    Manuel spearheaded Alaska on Sunday with 22 points in their bid to finally end their losing spell. But it was still not enough as the Aces fell to the Hotshots, 95-90, for a 0-5 mark.

    “Sama ng talo namin na ‘yun,” said Manuel. “’Yun ‘yung pinakamasamang talo namin ngayon. Close game eh.”

    The Aces are still searching for that elusive win, and Sunday was the closest the team got to giving their new head coach Jeff Cariaso a victory.

    While saddened with another defeat, Manuel is just looking at the positive side of the loss, as he sees an impending victory by the Aces sooner rather than later. Alaska takes on Rain or Shine in its next outing on Sunday.

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    “Sana makuha namin next game. Puro positive pa naman kami, hindi kami nadodown talaga. Ganun dun sa amin ‘yung mga coaches eh. ‘Yung tiwala nila, andoon pa rin. Alam namin makukuha rin namin ‘yung panalo na ‘yun,” said Manuel.

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      Manuel said he was happy that the Aces are finally able to slash big deficits as seen in the Hotshots game.

      “Eto na ‘yung pinakamagandang game namin. Parang down kami ng 15. Pagbalik namin galing sa timeout, nakabalik kami sa game hanggang end of the third quarter na dalawa na lang lamang nila. “’Yung binibigay sa amin na instruction ni coach Jeff, talagang positive kaya medyo napaganda ‘yung third,” said Manuel.

      Alaska though doesn’t have the luxury of games as they need to win sooner as eight teams enter the quarterfinals, the top four holding a twice-to-beat advantage in that series.

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      “Parang sabi sa amin ni coach Jeff, kahit five out of six lang, may chance pa naman siguro sa playoffs. Kailangan mas focused kami sa mga next game namin. Talagang every game, crucial na,” said Manuel.

      Manuel hopes the Aces can do a comeback act similar to that of Meralco in last year’s Governors’ Cup where they clustered six straight victories to reach the semifinals against them.

      “Naalala namin ‘yung ginawa ng Meralco. Parang every game crucial sa kanila. Siguro kung nagawa nila, baka magawa din namin,” Manuel said.

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      PHOTO: Jerome Ascaño
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