Combo guard Terrence Romeo and the GlobalPort Batang Pier are on a hunt for their third straight victory when they face the Alaska Aces today in the Philippine Basketball Association Season 42 Philippine Cup at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
The Batang Pier will collide against the Aces at 4:15 p.m. followed by the match between the Northern Luzon Expressway (NLEX) Road Warriors and the Star Hotshots at 7 p.m.
The Batang Pier posted a strong 2-0 win-loss start after blasting Mahindra (97-75) and the Star Hotshots (81-74).
“Hopefully we sustain the run and I hope we can adjust to the game against Alaska. We will scout them first if they still playing the same game. As what I’ve said, the real test will be in the upcoming few games,” said coach Franz Pumaren.
Romeo is expecting the Aces to play harder than in their first two games.
“Alaska is not an easy opponent because they are a championship caliber team. We cannot relax against them. I think we have to double our preparation and listen to our coaches,” Romeo told The Manila Times during interview.
Besides Romeo, GlobalPort will be depending on the prowess of Stanley Pringle, Nino KG Canaleta, Jay-R Quinahan, Von Pessumal, Karl Dehesa, Mike Cortez, Mick Pennisi, Billy Mamaril, Anthony Semerad and Aaron Aban in their battle against the Aces.
Alaska, on the other hand, wants to regain its winning form after absorbing two losses. Suspended players Chris Exciminiano and Vic Manuel will also be returning this game to support Calvin Abueva, Jayvee Casio, Chris Banchero, Kevin Racal and Dondon Hontiveros.
“GlobalPort has an incredibly potent offense led by Terrence (Romeo) and Stanley (Pringle),” said Alaska coach Alex Compton via text message. “They have added in key players in JR (Quinahan) and KG (Canaleta), and their coach is one of the top ones in the country.”
“We have got to defend Terrence and Stanley as a team, but then we have to worry about the veterans they already had last year working with key veterans they added this year. We really want to get into the win column after two close, tough losses to start the season.”
NLEX, meanwhile, will try to rebound from a frustrating loss last Saturday against sister team Meralco. The Road Warriors are holding a 1-1 win-loss record while the Star Hotshots are still winless in two games.
“I try to focus on the job at hand and not get distracted by Paul Lee being on the other side. The Hotshots are struggling but they are still one of the top teams in the league. We played poor defense last time around. This time we hope to correct that mistake,” NLEX coach Yeng Guiao said.
The Road Warriors will be relying on Kevin Alas, Carlo Lastimosa, Paul Asi Taulava, Sean Anthony, Enrico Villanueva, Bradwyn Guinto, Raul Soyud, Jonas Villanueva, Garvo Lanete and Eric Camson as they clash with the Hotshots.
Lee with Aldrech Ramos, Jio Jalalon, Rafi Reavis, Peter June Simon, Jean Marc Pingris and Mark Barroca will lead the Hotshots’ charge.