Magnolia’s Ramos shakes off early struggles with big 2nd half
ANTIPOLO — Aldrech Ramos’ offensive struggles didn’t encourage him from shooting and helping Magnolia to beat NLEX in Game 5 of the 2018 PBA Philippine Cup semifinals on Sunday night.
Ramos was off the mark early but the veteran forward kept playing his game and his efforts paid off in the second half, where he poured in all of his 15 points, including a crucial triple that capped off the Hotshots’ 16-4 run with 5:59 remaining.
And for Ramos, his turnaround in the last two quarters all boiled down to confidence.
“The coaches reminded me to be confident and not hesitate when I have the ball. As a player, that’s really a big morale boost especially that it came from your coaches,” Ramos, who shot 4-of-11 from the field, said after the Hotshots beat the Road Warriors, 87-78.
It was Ramos’ best showing in the series against the Road Warriors that he hopes to be just a start of bigger games ahead.
But the 29-year-old doesn’t want to get too ahead of himself knowing that NLEX won’t go down without a fight in Game 6.
“We have to go back to training and prepare because we know NLEX wants to bounce back and they will do everything to extend the series,” he said.
Ramos, though, said that Magnolia is ready to seize the opportunity to end its four-year finals drought.
“We’ve been in this position a number of times, been in the semis but failed to get the ticket to the Finals. We need to work hard and hopefully next game, we execute our gameplan well, surpass their energy, and win this series,” he said.
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