Despite missing the services of Marc Pingris in the 2nd half after being tagged with a flagrant foul penalty 2 on a hit on James Sena, the Mixers were still able to carve out a huge win against the Bolts, 108-90. With the win, San Mig Super Coffee improved their record to 2-1 while Meralco drops to the bottom of the team standings with their 4th straight loss to start the conference at 0-4.
Let’s now review our Keys to the Game and see how the Mixers were able to close this one out against the Bolts.
Review of the Keys to the Game
Contrary to their last game against SMB, the Mixers’ bench showed up to play tonight. With PJ Simon coming off the bench in this one, the shock troopers of Coach Tim Cone contributed 52 of the 108 points produced by the Mixers. The “Super Sub” PJ Simon fired 22 points in an efficient shooting night (81% eFG, 10/13 from the field).
After struggling in their last game, Allein Maliksi and Ian Sangalang found a way to contribute in this game. Allein finished the game with 9 points while Ian chipped in 8 points as well. However, we’re still waiting to see an explosion of some sort from the sensational rookie Justin Melton who wasn’t able to contribute a single point on this one on just one field goal attempt.
Cliff Hodge continues his stellar showing this conference with another solid game against the Mixers. Luckily for San Mig, Hodge didn’t get enough offensive support from his team mates aside from their import (David 6 points, Dillinger 0 points) to secure the W. Hodge finished with a double-double of 21 points (50% eFG, 3 threes) and 11 rebounds. Returning import Mario West (31p-11r-8a) did everything he could together with Hodge but it just wasn’t enough.
The Mixers did a good job defending the Bolts and it resulted into turnovers. Meralco finished the game with a total of 18 turnovers and San Mig was able to capitalize on this them dropping in 23 turnover points.
Here are my other observations and key notes from the game.
ROLE REVERSAL: PJ SIMON X MARK BARROCA
It was one of those games wherein Coach Tim Cone opted to start Mark Barroca in place of PJ Simon and it ended up to be a brilliant coaching move as he got a solid game from both players. In his 1st start this conference, the “Coffee King” Mark Barroca played solidly as he scored 15 points to go with 7 assists, 4 rebounds, and a steal in 30 minutes of action.
It was a balanced attack for the San Mig Super Coffee Mixers the entire game. It was a game wherein they moved the ball well (20 assists) and everybody was able to contribute on offense. James Yap and Marc Pingris started the strong and they finished the game with 13 and 10 points apiece. As usual, Marqus Blakely was all over the place (in a good way, of course) for the Mixers. The prolific import of San Mig finished with a double-double of 16 points and 18 rebounds (8 offensive rebounds) to go with a game-high 5 blocks. It was really a team effort that gave them this win. And they even got a contribution from seldom-used player Jerwin Gaco who scored 4 points (1/1 FG and 2/2 FTs) in this game (Let’s go #Gaconatics!).
FATIGUE AND FOCUS
Late in the 2nd quarter, Marc Pingris lost his cool after a hard screen by James Sena that hit his injured rib. “Sakuragi” retaliated with a “punch” that forced the referees to throw him out of the game with a flagrant foul penalty 2. Luckily for the Mixers, Ping’s absence didn’t result in a loss for the team.
But this scenario just indicates that fatigue is becoming a factor for the Mixers. As Coach Tim said after the game, the Mixers get a little bit “pikon” at times because tiredness sets in. It was very evident that Pingris lost his cool on this one and it is still not sure on whether the Commissioner will impose heftier penalties in the days to come.
The Mixers should learn a thing or two from this one as they must let go of the little things going on inside the court and just maintain their focus on the game and from the words of Coach Tim, “We (The Mixers) just gotta stay focused on winning.”
Overall, it was a great win for the Mixers. They must keep in mind what they did well in this game for them to score another victory against a struggling but dangerous Globalport Batang Pier team in their next game.