Jimmy Alapag and Jayson Castro, two of Talk ‘N Text’s top guns were unusually silent when the Tropang Texters were ambushed by the gritty Alaska Aces in Game Two, 100-88.
Alapag, the PBA MVP two seasons ago, scored only four points on one-of-11 shooting, while Castro had a quiet 12 points.
Talk ‘N Text has been a defensive team all conference long, but in Game Two, the Tropang Texters couldn’t find any answer to the Aces’ well-oiled offense.
Alaska had four players hitting double figures led by JV Casio, who torched TNT’s defense with 22 points, spiked with five triples.
Hurting the Tropang Texters further was rookie and Best Player of the Conference candidate Calvin Abueva, who finished with another double-double performance of 20 points and 14 rebounds.
Cyrus Baguio and Sonny Thoss chipped in 18 and 13, respectively for a balanced scoring attack.
What hastened Talk ‘N Text’s Game Two loss was its inability to control the boards. Alaska held a 45-34 edge in the rebounding department as the game-long hustle of Abueva provided the fuel for the Aces’ strong second half performance.
With Game Three set on Dec. 26, both squads are given ample time to rest a little and then go back to the drawing boards to see what needs to be adjusted and what they must continue to do.
I expect Talk ‘N Text to come up with a strong performance on post-Christmas Day. Though knowing Alaska coach Luigi Trillo and his hard working coaching staff, the Aces will also find ways to keep their momentum going in the series.
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