Chris Ross almost recorded a triple-double after pouring 19 points including 2-for-3 triples, and adding 9 rebounds and 9 assists, but what matters for him outside of the numbers is how San Miguel responds in defining moments.
The Beermen posted a 16-point advantage in the third period, but saw it disappear when Ginebra made a huge run bridging the third and fourth quarters. The Kings pulled to within 71-73, but the Beermen showcased how complete and mature they were on the floor, closing the match on a 27-14 note to pick up their fifth straight win.
“We have championship blood. We kind of went away in the second conference, but we have it, and showed it against a hostile environment and a really good Ginebra team that is healthy,” Ross said.
“We had the character to go on another run for ourselves. The way to win championships is to play together as a team and play defense.”
Ross also noted his teammates’ performances for helping him achieve such statline, deflecting credit while sharing it is the team success that matters.
“I don’t really pay attention to that. I just play hard and make plays for my team. As long as we win, it’s all the matters. The assists are all my teammates’. I can make any pass but they have to make the shot. I have confidence in them, they have confidence in me,” he said.
In spite of the five-game winning run that placed the Beermen on the upper half of the team standings, Ross concluded the marathon has just began, and he hopes the team continues its sterling run by playing together as one.
“It’s big for us, but we know it is only the beginning. But it is not how you start. It’s how you finish,” he added. “We did not make the playoffs last conference and that has been our fuel. We’ve been working hard in practice and the offseason. We are playing team ball. The ball is moving and there are equal opportunities for everyone. We are all capable.”