San Mig's Ian Sangalang (C) goes to the basket against the defense of Ginebra's Greg Slaughter in their PBA Philippine Cup game. Photo by KC Cruz, PBA Images.
MANILA, Philippines – San Mig Super Coffee rookie Ian Sangalang copped his first PBA Player of the Week award in his young career after helping lead the Mixers to a flawless start in the PBA Commissioners’ Cup.
Sangalang, the second pick in the 2013 PBA Rookie Draft, had 16 points and five rebounds as the Mixers opened the conference with a 91-75 victory over GlobalPort.
He followed up that performance with a solid 10-point, seven-rebound effort in their 90-80 victory against Ginebra, and was at his best in the final quarter when the Mixers finally pulled away.
“Ian gave us a huge lift and got us that lead in the fourth quarter,” San Mig coach Tim Cone said in PBA.ph of his prized rookie. “He just doesn’t blink in the fourth quarter.”
Cone marveled at Sangalang’s fearlessness in crunch time, especially as he was matched up against either Ginebra’s import or Japeth Aguilar.
“It doesn’t matter who is guarding him – whether it’s Japeth or the import. He just doesn’t back down,” said Cone. “He’s not afraid.”
The former NCAA Most Valuable Player from San Sebastian averaged 13.0 points and six rebounds to become the first winner of the Player of the Week award in the conference.