Magnolia seeks 3-0 lead
Game Today (Ynares Center, Antipolo City) 6:30 p.m. – Alaska vs Magnolia Series Summary: Game 1 – Magnolia 100, Alaska 84 Game 2 – Magnolia 77, Alaska 71 (Magnolia leads series 2-0)
othing is set in stone as far as coach Chito Victolero is concerned when Magnolia goes for a commanding 3-0 lead against Alaska tonight in the PBA Governors’ Cup Finals at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City.
Victolero urged his players to remain sharp ahead of the 6:30 p.m. clash after the Hotshots claimed Friday’s Game 2, 77-71, behind a defense that forced the Aces commit mistakes in the dying minutes.
“We don’t think that we’re up or we’re down,” Victolero said. “The important thing is that we have the proper mindset and that we are on the same page.
“There’s no reason for us to celebrate. This is a best-of-seven series and it’s not yet over,” added Victolero, who is two wins shy of claiming his first championship as a coach.
Aces counterpart Alex Compton is also singing the same tune despite seeing his players waste a golden chance of splitting the first two games of the title showdown.
But Compton said that lesser turnovers will benefit Alaska’s chances of turning things around after committing a total of 51 in the first two games.
“That’s the prime story of the first two games. We just gotta be better,” said Compton.
Spotlight will be on Magnolia sophomore Jio Jalalon, who heroics has enabled the Hotshots to move closer toward their first PBA championship since completed a Grand Slam in 2014.
Jalalon bucked a sluggish Game 2 to score a go-ahead jumper that put Magnolia ahead 73-71 with 2:40 remaining before conspiring with his teammates to seal the victory in the ugliest of ways as Alaska failed to score the rest of the way.
The Aces, on the other hand, lamented on their failure to score in the game’s final 4:55.
Alaska import Mike Harris, however, believes a victory will change the complexion of the series.
“All we need to do is win one. (That) changes the whole thing,” said Harris.