Photo by Tristan Tamayo / INQUIRER.net
MANILA, Philippines – Barangay Ginebra only had three days to prepare for the first game of the PBA Governors' Cup semi-final series against NorthPort.
Ginebra's coaching staff and core, flagged by Stanley Pringle and LA Tenorio, have paused at the recently completed Southeast Asian Games, in which the Philippines won the gold medal.
However, this campaign left Ginebra's head coach Tim Cone and his staff little time to prepare the Gin Kings for Batang Pier, which, on the contrary, had all the time in the world.
“It was a very ugly performance. It was embarrasing. They wanted it more than we did and it is one of the worst first games I've ever been involved in on this site, ”said Cone, who led Gilas Pilipinas to a dominant gold medal race after Ginebra suffered a 124-90 draw on Saturday Night. “But they have surpassed all facets of the game. So we have to come back better next time. "
In addition to Pringle and Tenorio, the great men Greg Slaughter and Japeth Aguilar also belonged to the Filipino team, in which striker Joe Devance also served as an assistant coach.
Cone does not believe, however, that fatigue played a role in blowing out.
"No, I just think that there was a lack of preparation. We didn't prepare as well as we could, but the guy was also missing, but most of our coaching staff weren't ready yet, ”said Cone, who was celebrating his 62nd birthday. "They surprised us with their zone. We didn't master the zone well. They changed their defenses, did a really good job and presented a good game plan. "
On the other hand, NorthPort shot almost 50 percent from the 3-point range, which was 19-out of 40.
Michael Qualls set the tone for Batang Pier: 27 of his top 38 points came in the first half.
Qualls also collected 15 rebounds and four steals and received a lot of help from the locals.
Christian Standhardinger, who also played for Gilas at SEA Games, secured Qualls with 16 points, 15 rebounds and six assists, while Garvo Lanete got NorthPort off the bench and scored all of his 24 points in the second half. Lanete made 6-of-9 out of downtown.
“You shot really well. We didn't expect them to come out with that kind of fire. It was like we were too relaxed. We didn't expect them to hit us hard. We started flat and then gave them more confidence, ”said Tenorio.
Ginebra hopes to complete the series on Monday evening at the Araneta Coliseum.
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