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Sports

Aces sag, break down in Game 4

Joey Villar, Nelson Beltran - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines – Alaska Milk coach Alex Compton said they blew their chance for a sweep as they suffered “fundamental breakdown,” allowing the San Miguel Beermen to score on breakaway layups at crunch time Sunday at the Philsports Arena in Pasig.

The Aces had hoped to celebrate another grand moment in the very venue of their numerous title conquests in the 90s, but folded up in overtime and took a 100-104 loss to the Beermen in Game Four of the Smart Bro PBA Philippine Cup Finals.

The two teams bring their battle back to the Smart Araneta Coliseum tomorrow with the Aces taking a second shot at the title clincher against the SMB side that will be out to further extend the series.

“We’ve got to come back and be better,” said Compton.

“Chris Ross getting layups killed us. It’s fundamental breakdown. It can’t happen. We have to be better,” Compton insisted.

The Alaska bench chieftain expects the Beermen to be tougher and better coming off a two-day rest.

“I wish we could play them (the morning after Game Four) but we play them Wednesday. They will have their veteran players rested,” he said.

Compton is convinced the Beermen will be tougher to handle in Game Five.

“It’s a series for a reason. Everybody was coming to me talking about sweep, sweep, sweep. I don’t know if you thought I was kidding but they’re such a tough team with a bunch of winners. It’s not easy to sweep anybody. It’s not going to be easy on Wednesday. I just want to try to come out of this championship series with the title,” he said.

The series could have been over if the Aces handled themselves better with an 11-point lead entering the last three minutes of play Sunday.

They went 0-of-4 from the field and committed three errors as they went scoreless in the next three minutes of the contest, enabling the Beermen to get back into the fight.

“I didn’t sense laziness from our guys. I felt some of our guys were so ‘gigil.’ They’re so fired-up which happens some time. That’s a factor but it should not take away how San Miguel played and how well they executed their game plan,” said Compton.

“I thought our execution was poor. We had 21 turnovers. We can’t turn the ball over like this. And a lot of it was really not just smart with the ball,” Compton added.

ACIRC

ALASKA MILK

ALEX COMPTON

BEERMEN

CHRIS ROSS

COMPTON

GAME FIVE

GAME FOUR

GAME FOUR OF THE SMART BRO

PHILIPPINE CUP FINALS

PHILSPORTS ARENA

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