Simon Enciso starts, sparks San Miguel win with dad watching
MANILA, Philippines–A surprise starter in Game 5, Simon Enciso did not disappoint San Miguel by giving the Beermen a big lift in a pivotal clash in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup Finals on Sunday.
Enciso also made sure to make Game 5 memorable for his dad, who was in attendance at Smart Araneta Coliseum watching him play for the first time in a decade.
“Right after I hit my first one [I felt it]. When you sit out and watch your guys play, the competitiveness in me just comes out. Just trying to like, be that competitor. I wanted to be on the floor and help my team,” said Enciso after San Miguel’s 108-98 win over Magnolia for a 3-2 series lead.
“It’s just when I hit the first shot, especially since my dad’s here. My dad hasn’t seen me play since I was in the PBA D-League 10 years ago. So, to have him out here and perform like that, it’s a dream come true,” added Enciso, who made back-to-back triples in the first two minutes and 15 seconds of the game.
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The 32-year-old guard played his best game in a while with 15 points–all from downtown–on top of five rebounds and three assists in 30 minutes.
He helped set the tone for the Beermen, who never trailed, with 12 first half points on a 4-of-5 shooting clip from long range.
What made Enciso’s performance more impressive was he stayed locked in despite hardly getting any playing time in the Finals, where he had gone scoreless prior to Game 5.
He did not play in Games 2 and 4 and saw action for less than six minutes in Game 3 while logging just 2:35 in the Finals opener.
Yet, he was never discouraged and patiently waited for his turn.
“Everybody in our team is good. From the beginning of the bench all the way down. So it’s just the mindset of staying ready and [having the] next man up. Terrence (Romeo) goes down with an injury, C-Ross had a little injury last game, it’s just a next man up mentality to step up and help the team no matter what happens,” Enciso said.
“I’m just happy I could be there for my teammates and have a good game like this to put us back in the right direction.”
His teammates couldn’t be any happier too with the likes of CJ Perez and Jericho Cruz summing up Enciso’s performance in one word: “Amazing.”