InterAKTV · Sunday, December 9, 2012 · 8:47 pm
The Talk 'N Text Tropang Texters rallied to beat Barangay Ginebra San Miguel, 87-80, Sunday night at the SM Mall of Asia Arena to ride into the Philippine Cup quarterfinals with a victory under their belt.
Ali Peek had 16 points, 18 rebounds, and three blocks to lead Talk 'N Text, which came back from a 17-point third quarter deficit to book the victory.
The game held little meaning for either team, as both were locked into their respective quarterfinal matchups. But the two squads didn't play like it was a no-bearing game, with the action getting heated at several junctures.
"There's no such thing as a non-bearing game. The objective is to always give the paying customers their money's worth. I've been long enough in the league and I know our priority is the customers and win basketball games for them. We all owe it to the fans," said Talk 'N Text coach Norman Black.
"The win was more about pride. We're the No. 1 team no matter what, but we may see this team down the road."
The Tropang Texters worked double time on defense in the fourth period, when they held their rivals to just two field goals.
Barangay Ginebra's seven-point output in the final period is the team's lowest scored this conference. The Gin Kings' last field goal came at the three-minute mark of the fourth quarter courtesy of Rico Maierhofer.
Talk 'N Text finished with just two defeats in 14 elimination round games, while Ginebra's win-loss record fell to 7-7 to wrap up its campaign.
The Tropang Texters will play Air 21 in the quarterfinals, with the Tropang Texter enjoying twice-to-beat advantage. The series starts on Thursday.
"You can't take any team for granted. I believe they're better than their record," said Peek.
Ginebra will take on Rain or Shine in a best-of-three series that kicks off Wednesday. It marks the second straight year the two teams face each other in the Philippine Cup quarterfinals. The Elasto Painters swept the Gin Kings in two games last season in the final eight of the same tournament.