With reigning Defensive Player of the Year Chris Ross still not at a hundred percent due to an injury in his right thigh, Matt Ganuelas-Rosser took it upon himself to step up for the San Miguel Beermen in Game Four of the 2018 Philippine Cup semifinals.
And the six-foot-five swingman did not disappoint.
In probably his best all-around performance in a Beermen jersey, Ganuelas-Rosser finished with 12 points, nine assists, and six rebounds to help San Miguel to a 102-81 victory over the Barangay Ginebra San Miguel.
Ganuelas-Rosser couldn’t be prouder of his outing, as it helped the reigning All-Filipino champions move to just a win away from entering the Philippine Cup championship round for the fourth consecutive season.
“Coming in, we knew Chris wasn’t a hundred percent so you know, the good thing about this team is it’s next man up,” said the Olongapo-born cager, who was averaging just 7.6 points, 2.3 boards, and 1.7 feeds in the series’ first three games.
“My whole team gave me confidence to step up so I just stepped up my game. Thankfully it was good enough for us to get a win.”
Ross, for his part, sang praises to Ganuelas-Rosser, whom the Beermen acquired last season via trade with corporate rivals TNT Katropa.
“Luckily Matt did an amazing job in my position today,” said the two-time Finals MVP.
Of the figures he produced, the nine dimes he collected proved to be the most surprising. Asked regarding such, Ganuelas-Rosser said that getting the ball in the right spots has always been a part of his arsenal.
“It was just… We were making shots. And that’s always been part of my game: to move the ball,” said the four-year pro.
“Today for sure, with Ross not out there, I wanted to step up in that department and just keep the ball moving.”
All eyes are now on the Beermen if they will be able to finish off the Gin Kings in Game Five this Saturday at the Cuneta Astrodome. And for Ganuelas-Rosser, he and San Miguel are not looking to give their rivals another day to live.
“Come out with a hundred percent effort to get a win. I think the next game is at Cuneta, chane of venue so anything can happen. Our mentality is to just come out and play hard and not to let them get a chance.”