Show of force
After losing the first two games of the best-of-seven series in contrasting styles, the Aces broke away in the second quarter to cut the Magnolia lead to 2-1 after a 100-71 victory at Ynares Center in Antipolo City on Sunday night.
“I’m glad that we won, but we’re still down (in the series),” Alaska coach Alex Compton said. “I expect Game 4 to be a lot more like Game 2 (which was close). I guarantee you, this (blowout of the Hotshots) will not happen again.”
“I’m shocked,” Compton said of their 29-point victory. “I didn’t expect this.”
Import Mike Harris scored 36 points and had 18 rebounds in just three quarters, and Compton pulled rabbits out of his hat in Abe Galliguez and Carl Bryan Cruz to register their first win in the series.
Romeo Travis scored 18 points and Mark Barroca 13 for the Hotshots, who will have three days to regroup.
The startling difference in this game, aside from the score, was how well the Aces executed and minimized their mistakes.
After averaging 25.5 turnovers in the first two games, Alaska only had 15 for Game 3, with Chris Banchero finishing with 11 assists against just two errors. Harris, who came into the contest norming six errors a game, had three.
“While it would be great to hope for this (blowout win) to happen again, it won’t,” Compton said of his expectations for Wedensday’s Game 4 at Smart Araneta Coliseum. “We’re going to bring the same level of intensity, but I don’t expect for one minute it will be like this.”
Magnolia coach Chito Victolero accepted defeat by crediting how better prepared the Aces were. However, he had things to say about the game officials.
“Just give credit to the Alaska team, they prepared (well) for this game,” Victolero said.
“But I kept reviewing the tapes. For this game, the Alaska players were the ones holding my players and they weren’t calling the fouls. I just want consistency. Yes, I’m calling their attention now. Let’s be consistent.”
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