MANILA, Philippines—Perpetual Help was desperate to avoid a 1-3 start. In the game’s last seconds, the Altas was seemingly uplifted by divine intervention.
After Mapua snatched the lead from the Altas, 77-76, Cedrick Abis delivered for the Altas the a go-ahead three-point shot to put them back ahead, 79-77, with 26.1 seconds remaining
Perpetual head coach Myk Saguiguit revealed that the play wasn’t even designed for Abis.
“That shot was God’s gift, almost. Would you expect Abis to hit that? I told my players to pray silently because like we always say, anything can happen,” said after their 79-77 win against the Cardinals at San Juan Arena on Friday.
“That last play was actually for Kim (Aurin), but the kid had great focus so he just took the shot,” he clarified.
Abis was shooting efficiently from the field (3-for-3) before heaving the game-winning triple. He finished with 11 points on a perfect shooting clip.
“It was a lucky shot. I was surprised because I did not expect it to go in. When it went in, I was so happy and I thanked the Lord I’m happy because coach Myk has trust in me in those situations, even in close games, he trusts me,” Abis said.
“We can not afford to lose this game. If they want to enjoy this season and avoid a stressed season, they have to beat Mapua,” he said.
The Altas, who now hold a 2-2 card, avoided a seat at the bottom of the standings. Mapua, meanwhule, dropped its third straight assignment and is just above the winless Emilio Aguinaldo College (0-4) with a 1-3 slate.
“I’m very happy Abis gave us the shot. Was that a lucky shot? I don’t think so. That’s worked on,” Saguiguit concluded.
Abis, Saguiguit and the Altas will look to keep their momentum alive against San Beda, which also holds a 2-2 record, on Sunday.