MPBL: ‘Underdog’ Bacolod hopes to shock competition

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For a squad considered an underdog, at least on paper, there is no better way to introduce itself than by making a strong first impression.

This is what the All-Star Bacolod Ballers did when it pulled off a 73-71 upset over the Bacoor Strikers in the opening day of the Chooks-to-Go MPBL Invitationals on Saturday at the Mall of Asia Arena.

Head coach Alex Angeles later shared in the post-game press conference that not being penciled as a contender in the short tournament only adds fuel to the fire for his troops.

“Ang pine-preach ko naman sa kanila, hindi man kami maganda sa papel, pero we make sure magtatrabaho kami sa practice. ‘Yung makikita niyo sa bawat isa sa players namin, ‘yung hunger, ‘yung character and values,” the mentor said.

“From there, titingnan namin paano kami magg-grow as a team. Ang sarap n’un, eh, underdog, magandang term talaga ‘yun.”

Bacoor led by as much as 16 early on, but ABB recovered using a 27-12 third quarter before making the necessary stops towards the end game for the breakthrough win in Group A.

In the process, Bacolod scored 23 turnover points off 19 Bacoor miscues which proved to be the turning point in the end.

Using preseason perceptions as added motivation definitely made wonders for the team on opening day, and Angeles looks to build on their early success in the days to come.

“Pero alam naman natin sa basketball, pagdating sa laro, lima lang naman ang maglalaro sa court kaya maka-cancel rin ‘yung mga superstar (ng kalaban). So ‘yun nga ang isa sa aming mga motivation,” he shared.

Besides, games are never played on paper, after all.

Photo from Chooks-to-Go MPBL

Levi Verora