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Magnolia topped Brgy. Ginebra in their Manila Clasico duel Sunday, denting the Kings’ slate and leaving the San Miguel Beermen as the only unbeaten team in the PBA Season 47 Philippine Cup.
Minus the injury-hit Paul Lee and though becoming depleted all the more on Calvin Abueva’s exit on technical infractions, the Hotshots stayed tough and ground out an 89-84 win over the Gin Kings at the MOA Arena in Pasay City.
The Hotshots defied the odds largely behind Ian Sangalang and Jio Jalalon, improving their win-loss record to 2-3 while pulling the Gin Kings down to 3-1.
“Ang motivation namin is to play defense; hindi sa offense. Madami kasi kaming kalaban, kailangan namin patahimikin ang crowd nila,” said Sangalang, carrying a big load with 24 points and nine rebounds in over 40 minutes of action.
Jalalon contributed 19 points, six assists, four rebounds and three steals for the Hotshot who survived the ouster of Abueva with over nine minutes left to play.
“Sobrang saludo ako sa mga players ko,” said Magnolia coach Chito Victolero on the brave fight put up by his crippled team.
“We talked about adversity and challenges. I know naman that they will not back down and will keep on pushing. Binigay nila lahat,” said Victolero, finding big relief they were able to salvage another win in a tough start to the season.