It’s better to have tried than to quit
The Star Hotshots and the Alaska Aces figured in a tight game with a share of third place in the standings at stake for the victor, and a steep fall to ninth for the opposing team.
And after 53 minutes of tough basketball, the Hotshots fell, 90-97, scoring just four points in extra time.
Allein Maliksi was Star’s hero in the final period, knocking down the game-tying triple with 1:23 left. At that point, he had been 6-of-10 from the field.
However, his role as hero lasted for just a few seconds. The 29-year-old missed three potential game-winners in the last 38 seconds of regulation that drew sighs from the Star faithful. He then went cold in overtime, missing both of his attempts.
“Sa kanya talaga yung play. Down the stretch, naka-shoot siya so I feel Allein has the confidence to take that shot,” head coach Chito Victolero remarked.
“I can give it to Paul [Lee] or even to Marc [Pingris], but I feel Allein is the best player na yung confidence andun.”
The product of the University of Santo Tomas basketball program rued that he had not been able to follow the basic shot-making form during crunch time.
“It’s just yung proper mechanics ng shot ko. Yung timing nawala, hindi ko na nakuha yung rhythm ko. Missed shot lang talaga,” shared Maliksi, who had been shooting 45.8 percent from the field prior to this game.
“Wala naman siyang [Coach Chito Victolero] any specific instruction, kung sino lang ma-open or sino yung malibre,” he added.
“Nakikita ko rin minsan na may opportunity na tumira, tinitira ko lang.”
Though the loss is a tough pill to swallow, the seven-year veteran is charging this game to experience.
“Siyempre crunch time. Siguro this game, kung isisi sa akin, okay lang. Kaya kong i-blame sa sarili ko kasi hindi ko naman na-shoot yung pampanalo. Sorry,” the 6-foot-3 forward said.
“Learning experience at sana ma-improve ko as a player yung mga ganung moment sa darating pa.”
But still, he has no regrets, vowing that this will serve as motivation for him to perform better.
“Siyempre hindi naman tayo yung tao na ‘I missed.’ Mas pangit naman kung you quit trying na, mas okay yung you keep trying. At least, I tried.
“Kung na-shoot ko naman, nanalo kami, credit sa kin. Kung hindi, sige okay lang, sasaluhin ko kung anuman,” he promised.