Gallent assures Game 7

Joaquin Henson - The Philippine Star
Gallent assures Game 7
San Miguel head coach Jorge Gallent.
PBA Images

MANILA, Philippines — San Miguel Beer coach Jorge Gallent has guaranteed, with no hesitation, that there will be a Game Seven in the PBA Philippine Cup Finals. Meralco is up, 3-2, in the best-of-seven series and carries a twice-to-beat advantage entering Game Six, a potential closer, at the Smart Araneta Coliseum tonight.

Even as San Miguel has to beat Meralco twice in a row for the championship, Gallent is unperturbed. He has no doubt the Beermen will take Game Six and force a winner-take-all showdown on Wednesday. “For sure, Game Seven,” said Gallent. Clear in Gallent’s mind is the San Miguel that lost to Meralco in Game Five. 92-88, last Friday wasn’t the same San Miguel that burst out of the gates to rack up a 10-0 record this conference.

“If we don’t share the ball, we’re not a good team,” said Gallent. “They had 20 fastbreak points, we had six. Their fastbreak points came from our forced shots so they took advantage. CJ Perez went 1-of-11 (from two-point range), that’s not him. We took bad shots, we didn’t share the ball. We’ve got to minimize turnovers.”

Meralco coach Luigi Trillo wouldn’t comment on Gallent’s guarantee. “We’ll just focus on getting ready,” he said. “Still a lot of things to clean up. June Mar (Fajardo) got 38 points with 10 free throws. CJ had 17. Terrence (Romeo), Mo (Tautuaa), Vic (Manuel) and Marcio (Lassiter), at any time, can score. There’s nothing to celebrate at this point. We’ve got to get off our legs, get the necessary recovery to get our bodies right.”

Meralco active coaching consultant Nenad Vucinic said what will win Game Six and the series are determination, consistency and hard work. “Game Four was a terrible start that cost us,” he said, reflecting on San Miguel’s 111-101 win. “Too many mistakes that we can’t repeat.” The Bolts are a win away from bagging their first-ever PBA title but they’re not getting ahead of themselves.

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