Magnolia def Blackwater, 81-77 [PBA S48 PH Cup | Apr. 17, 2024]

Magnolia is on a mission to solidify their position in the Top 4, while Blackwater is desperate to break their four-game losing streak as they clash in a crucial showdown in the PBA Philippine Cup at the Ninoy Aquino Stadium on Wednesday.

The Hotshots, who were the runners-up in the Commissioner’s Cup, have bounced back from consecutive losses with impressive wins against the NorthPort Batang Pier and the Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters, bringing their record to 3-2 and putting them back in contention for a Top 2 spot.

Led by the resilient Mark Barroca, Magnolia is the clear favorite going into the game against Blackwater, who have fallen to a 3-4 record after a series of defeats.

Despite their recent struggles, Coach Chito Victolero emphasizes the importance of approaching each game with a warrior mentality.

“Hindi mo ma-predict ang PBA games ngayon. If you’re not prepared, even the elite teams for that matter, hindi nakakasiguro ng panalo,” said Victolero.

“That’s why you have to be in proper mindset. As for us, we compete every single day in practice in the hope na madala namin yan sa actual game,” he added.

Barroca, despite dealing with a hand injury, is determined to lead his team to victory against a dangerous Blackwater squad that is eager to turn their fortunes around.

“Kailangan lang walang hesitation, basta may opportunity, you take it,” said Barroca.

Coach Jeff Cariaso and his players are motivated to bounce back after a disappointing stretch that included losses to NLEX, Terrafirma, Rain or Shine, and Barangay Ginebra.

With only four games left in the conference, Blackwater is eager to finish strong against tough opponents like Magnolia, NorthPort, San Miguel Beer, and Phoenix. The Bossing are determined to put an end to their slump and make a statement in the remaining games.

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