Marqus Blakely of San Mig (dark) vs Japeth Aguilar of Ginebra (light). Photo by Nuki Sabio, PBA Images
MANILA -- "It's still our time."
These were the words of Coach Tim Cone on Sunday after the San Mig Super Coffee Mixers defeated Barangay Ginebra Kings, 102-90, in the PBA Governor's Cup eliminations at the Araneta Coliseum.
According to the PBA website, Cone once thought that the current Ginebra team is ready to dominate the league.
However, their latest win over the Kings just disproved this.
Import Marqus Blakely led San Mig with 34 points and 17 rebounds while also anchoring the teams defense as he stood in the middle of the team's full-court defense.
Ginebra was dominant during the three quarters, but was shut down after San Mig switched the full-court defense that triggered a 16-0 run, giving them a 94-79 lead at last quarter.
"They’re the dominant team through the first three quarters and we’re just trying to hang on. In the fourth quarter, we put some pressure and we got some free throws that set our defense. It kind a let the dogs out," said Cone.
"We made a big deal (out of this game). But for us, it’s just trying to get to first place and trying to be amongst the leaders,” Cone also said. “Obviously, Ginebra is an up and coming team. We hope they stay as up and coming. Let them get to the top next conference."
Cone said he hopes that his former assistant now-Ginebra coach Jeffrey Cariaso would learn a lot in this game.
"They have to respond to adversity. This is a good start to see what teams are going to do against you, and learn from it," said Cone. "This will be a lesson for them. When this happens again, they’ll grow and get better. That’s where we’ve been through."
With the win, the San Mig Coffee Mixers are now at the top spot of the PBA with a 4-1 record, while Ginebra and Air 21 Express are both at 3-1, tied for second place.