Looking to cruise, Aces slog past Dyip on Harris’ heroics
It was easy to understand why Alex Compton looked and sounded defeated even though he was doing the customary winning coach’s interview.
Playing a team that has done practically nothing worth remembering in the PBA Governors’ Cup, Compton’s Alaska Aces needed 44 points and 27 rebounds from import Mike Harris to turn back Columbian, 104-94, to earn at least a tie for a playoff berth in the season-closing conference on Wednesday night.
For a powerhouse team to be dragged into a close contest by such a lowly squad, Compton faced reporters with a long face, a somber tone and words of displeasure toward his charges who are up for a crucial game with another top four contender on Sunday.
“It’s an interesting feeling; we won that game but I am really unhappy right now,” he said even after the Aces improved to 6-2 and tied Blackwater for third spot with less than three weeks left in the elimination round. “No disrespect to anybody, but my concern is my team.
“I think we’re a stronger team than Columbian, but we didn’t play the way we needed to play,” he said. “We have to get better.”
The Aces slug it out with the Elite on Sunday in a match that could very well determine either side’s aspirations for a top four finish and a twice-to-beat privilege that goes with it.
“Absolutely,” Compton said when asked if he thinks that the Sunday clash against Blackwater is crucial. “We better be a different team [for that game] because it’s going to be a hard game for us if we play this way.”
“Good thing that he (Harris) is a stud,” Compton said. “But we don’t want to be overreliant on our import.”
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