Meralco coach: We’ll bounce back

Olmin Leyba - The Philippine Star
Meralco coach: We�ll bounce back
Ginebra’s Christian Standhardinger tangles with Meralco’s Raymond Almazan and Cliff Hodge in one of the wild plays in Game 5 won by the Gin Kings, 89-84.
STAR / File

MANILA, Philippines — Down but not out, Meralco is psyched up for its survival mission in the PBA Philippine Cup semifinal series against Barangay Ginebra.

The Bolts, after holding a 2-1 lead, have lost two in a row, including a deflating 84-89 Game 5 loss Sunday that saw them blow a 15-point lead, as the Gin Kings moved a win away from clinching the disputed ticket to the finals.

“We believe in our guys. We’ll bounce back. We have a day or two to prepare so we’ll get ready for that Game 6,” said coach Luigi Trillo ahead of Meralco’s do-or-die assignment tomorrow.

“Clearly, we knew from the start this is not going to be easy. There’s going to be some painful things in a series. This is painful but it’s not over. So focus lang kami sa next game, we’ll regroup, (consultant) coach Nenad (Vucinic), we (coaching staff) will look at the video and we’ll see what we can improve on pa.”

The Bolts appeared ready to blow Ginebra away in Game 5 when they seized a 59-44 tear five minutes into the third. But the Gin Kings launched a fierce rally to make it a very manageable two-point Meralco margin at the end of the period.

Christian Standhardinger then took charge as the crowd darlings outdueled their rivals towards the finish and stole their way to 3-2.

“We had them on the ropes. Marami kaming magandang ginagawa then maybe we just had a couple of mistakes all around the board,” noted Trillo.

Meralco is looking to defy the odds as it attempts to salvage the situation and revive its bid to reach the All-Filipino finals for the first time in franchise history.

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