After more than a year, Terrafirma finally tastes a victory
SMART CLARK GIGA CITY—Terrafirma picked an unfortunate moment to put an end to a long drought: In the shadow of a titanic clash between two squads tipped to contest the PBA Philippine Cup trophy.
But although coach Johnedel Cardel didn’t exactly have the luxury of scheduling victories. He just knew one would come his way inside the bubble.
That victory arrived on Friday, when the Dyip rolled past skidding Blackwater, 110-101, for their first win in seven games in the Philippine Cup at Angeles University Foundation powered by Smart 5G here.
“So all of [our difficulties] … is all in the mind,” said Cardel, who added that he took heart in his team’s gallant stand in a recent loss to Alaska.
“I always told them how we almost beat Alaska,” Cardel added. “The Aces have been defeating mighty teams.”
Practically out of the playoff picture, the Dyip are looking for little victories here. Like nabbing a victory after more than a year. Terrafirma last won a PBA game on Oct. 25, 2019, a 106-104 cliffhanger against Phoenix. Of course, there was the pandemic that shut the league down for seven months, dragging that drought longer than it should have lasted.
But the win proved to Cardel that his team still packs a fight, especially mentally.
“The heart and will to win is such an important part of it all,” he said. “I keep on telling [my players] that if they’re able to learn that, they can play for a long time here in the PBA.”
CJ Perez, last year’s top rookie, led Terrafirma with 27 points while this year’s top draft pick Roosevelt Adams added 20 points and 16 rebounds. The duo provided a glimpse of how potent their partnership can be if the Dyip can keep both in their roster for a long time.
The win was eventually overshadowed by the late clash between TNT and Barangay Ginebra, two colossal squads that have been tipped as favorites for the championship berths.
The Kings defeated the Tropang Giga, 85-79, to take the solo lead with their seventh win in nine games.
TNT dropped to 6-3.
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