PAGADIAN, ZAMBOANGA DEL SUR—When Edzel Mag-isa performs, Pagadian excels in the Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas VisMin Super Cup Mindanao Challenge.
That was the observation by head coach Gherome Ejercito, also noting that the Explorers captain was the team’s “barometer”.
“Si Edzel ang barometer namin,” exclaimed Ejercito.
“Kapag gumana si Edzel, tingnan mo ang score ang taas. Kapag wala siya, hirap kami. Kailangan namin siya,” he said after Pagadian’s 99-82 win over Roxas at the Pagadian City Gymnasium here, Wednesday.
Mag-isa really prepared for their clash with the red-hot Vanguards, who were riding a three-game win streak prior to their matchup.
The Explorers have dropped all of their last three outings. Thus,. they badly needed a victory to get out of the cellar in the seven-team field with the playoffs fast approaching.
“Hanggang may laro, laban pa rin ako,” said the 6-foot-5 big man.
“Ang important thing ay ‘yung puso ng mga player na habang hindi nagba-buzzer, laban pa rin,” added Mag-isa.
The standout from University of Batangas tallied a game-high 23 points on 10-of-15 shooting from the field. He also had 13 rebounds and three blocks.
Boosting Mag-isa was the trust and confidence given by Ejercito, who named the former as the team captain.
“Kapag pinupuri ka ng coach mo as a player, dagdag motivation yan. Dagdag fuel ‘yun para mas lakasan pa.”
After weathering that three-game losing skid, the Explorers hope they can build momentum out of this big rout against Roxas.
Pagadian will play tomorrow against Zamboanga Sibugay at 4:00 PM.