Photo Curated by Courtside PhilippinesGILAS74
Fajardo carries Gilas to beat Alab in first tune-up
by Reynald Magallon, November 04, 2019 8:38pm
June Mar Fajardo carried the load for the Gilas Pilipinas as they beat San Miguel-Alab Pilipinas, 98-95 in their tune-up game at the Meralco Gym on Monday.
Fajardo scored 12 of his 21 point output in the final frame as he gave the national squad the much needed lift against Alab who managed to keep in step with Gilas. RR Pogoy provided support with 15 points while Stanley Pringle added 10 markers.
Gilas head coach Tim Cone said the national squad were a little bit sloppy in the game, having stretches where they either do great or do bad.
"At times we were pretty and at times we were really ugly. I thought the team we played is really talented and really good, I'm shocked at how good they are," said Cone moment after the game that was kept close to the media and the public.
With the nationals failing to shake off the Alab and were even threatening in the final frame, Cone bared that he did what any other smart coach would do and that's to feed Fajardo down the stretch.
"Down the stretch, we did what any other smart coach would do. We rode June Mar. We jumped on his back and we rode him and he won the game for us down the stretch and he's a big horse so might as well ride him. That's gonna be our philosophy in the Southeast Asian Games," explained Cone.
"We wanna ride June Mar," he added.
Alab, who's also in the middle of the preparation for the ABL season gave the Gilas a run for their money only trailing by two at the end of the opening frame, 24-22. Gilas however tried to pull away in the second frame limiting their counterparts to just 16 points while scoring 23 points to take a 47-38 lead.
Alab then came alive once again in the third frame exploding for 29 points to cut the deficit down to just three, 71-68 heading into the final frame. That's when Gilas went to Fajardo to close the game out.
Gilas and Alab will once again meet next week Monday as part of their preparations for their respective tournaments.
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