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Jvee Casio, Kevin Racal return sparks Alaska’s playoff hopes

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Tiebreaker Times Jvee Casio, Kevin Racal return sparks Alaska's playoff hopes Basketball News PBA  PBA Season 44 Kevin Racal JVee Casio Alex Compton Alaska Aces 2019 PBA Philippine Cup

Heading into Wednesday’s PBA Philippine Cup clash with the Meralco Bolts, the Alaska Aces were in the midst of a three-game funk, where they lost by an average margin of 17.3 points.

The Milkmen were in dire need of a victory, not just to snap their slump, but to keep themselves on track for the playoff race. Their string of losses pulled down their win-loss card to 3-5.

Thankfully, they received a much welcome boost.

Veterans Jvee Casio and Kevin Racal have both recovered from their injuries, and their return definitely proved to be a major key in the Aces’ resounding 92-77 victory over the Orangemen.

“It’s nice to have Jvee and Kevin back,” said Alaska head coach Alex Compton, as Casio and Racal finished with 12 and nine points, respectively.

“They both came in and made plays.”

Tiebreaker Times Jvee Casio, Kevin Racal return sparks Alaska's playoff hopes Basketball News PBA  PBA Season 44 Kevin Racal JVee Casio Alex Compton Alaska Aces 2019 PBA Philippine Cup

“Masaya na nakabalik,” said Casio, who is coming off a foot injury.

“Important games na ‘to so kailangan namin talaga makuha para makapasok.”

“Timing din kasi parang playoffs na sa’min. Kailangan every game manalo na kami,” added Racal, who has just healed from a back injury.

With the two veterans’ returns, Alaska are nearly complete again, with Vic Manuel the only starter yet to return. And for Casio, it helps that they have come back, especially in this crucial stretch.

“It helps na kumpleto kami,” he said.

“Though very short yung mga practices namin, we just take kung anuman ibigay sa’min. And I hope we can do something about it and get into the playoffs.”

Racal agrees, but he believes, too, that defense will also be the key as the Aces try to get into the next round.

“Kailangan pa rin namin mag-work sa practice para sa darating na games. At yun pa rin [ang pagtatrabahuhan namin] yung depensa namin, dun kami mamumuhunan sa depensa.”

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