San Mig's James Yap tries to wiggle out of Chris Tiu's defense. Photo by Nuki Sabio, PBA Images.
MANILA, Philippines – Rain or Shine head coach Yeng Guiao used an old Filipino saying to describe how Game 5 of the PBA Governors Cup Finals is likely to go down between his Elasto Painters and the San Mig Super Coffee Mixers: "Matira ang matibay."
Guiao’s team forced a do-or-die game for the championship as they buried the Mixers in a hail of three-pointers in the second quarter, then showed composure as San Mig rallied in the second half to preserve an 88-79 win Monday night.
"There's really just a simple formula for winning today. We played a lot harder than (in) Game 3. As long as we're playing with energy and intensity, we have a chance," said Guiao, as quoted by PBA.ph. [http://pba.inquirer.net/47455/rain-or-shine-forces-game-5]
Their victory allowed Rain or Shine to postpone San Mig’s Grand Slam celebration, and Guiao is hoping to completely cancel their party on Wednesday night.
"Sa Tagalog, may kasabihan tayo na 'matira ang matibay.' Talagang patibayan na ito, dahil s asked at sa klase ng laro," Guiao explained.
"It's really physical out there, and you have to take all that," he added.
Meanwhile, San Mig Super Coffee coach Tim Cone admitted that the pressure of being so close to their Grand Slam goal may have gotten into the Mixers.
"No doubt, we have more pressure. We've realized that, and we have to play through it," said Cone. "Winning a Grand Slam is hard."
"It's gonna be hard for us. We really felt tonight that there's more pressure on us because of the Grand Slam," he added.
The game was tied at 21 at the end of the first quarter, but Jonathan Uyloan came off the bench to provide a big spark to the E-Painters at the start of the second frame. Uyloan drained back-to-back triples, and Rain or Shine wound up scoring 32 points in the frame to take a 53-38 lead at halftime.
The Mixers did make a huge rally in the third period, but Paul Lee and Arizona Reid answered with big baskets of their own to cut into the San Mig run and keep Rain or Shine in control.