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MANILA, Philippines — For star guard LA Tenorio it took a mix of playing unselfish basketball and the veterans coming through that put Barangay Ginebra San Miguel back on the winning track.
In the midst of a five-game slump, the Kings put the breaks on their slide when it shot down league-leader Talk ‘N Text, 104-103, a win they can build on as the conference progresses.
“Defensively we were aggressive but it was really our offense. We got everyone involved and that’s what’s important for us because we were becoming predictable,” Tenorio, who had 21 points, told INQUIRER.net. “We made sure we involve everyone.”
Ginebra played 11 players in that game, five of whom scored in double figures led by Mark Caguioa’s 22.
“Somehow, guys are starting to understand that it has to involve everybody and at the same time, the responsibility of knowing when the shots could come. How the system goes,” said head coach Siot Tanquingcen.
Aside from the old reliable, rookies Chris Ellis and Yousef Taha also gave the Kings a lift.
“It has to be balanced we still need the young guys. We need to understand each other’s roles,” Tanquingcen said.
Ellis had 11 points and six rebounds while Taha debuted with three points, two rebounds, three assists and two blocks in just 12 minutes.
“Nakukuha na ng mga players kung ano ang role nila sa team,” said Tenorio, who admitted they were playing with a sense of urgency.
And as for himself, Tenorio said he’s still a work in progress when it comes to adjusting to his new team but being one of the veterans, he also knows he has little time left to figure it out with the conference nearing its crucial stretch.
As of now, the Kings are in sixth place with a 4-5 record and both Tanquingcen and Tenorio know it would take more for them to keep the winning going.
“The biggest part is heart, our desire to win. Our aggression was evident, our offense was more patient. It worked to our advantage,” added Tanquingcen.
But, the Ginebra cocach said, “It’s still a long way to go.”
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