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Romeo says Game 1 explosion product of hard work on pre-game shootaround

By Ivan Saldajeno

PASAY--For Terrence Romeo, having a longer pre-game shootaround benefits him a lot.

"Pag kami yung first game, maaga akong nagshu-shooting, kasi pag second game ka, di ka makaka-shooting," Romeo told some sportswriters.

Romeo's pre-game routine bore a huge fruit on Monday night in a one-game-only fixture where he scorched for a career-high 41 points.

"Nagbunga yung hard work," he continued after leading GlobalPort to a 107-93 win in Game 1 of its PBA Philippine Cup semifinals with Alaska.

Romeo was actually seen doing his shootaround at around 4 p.m., three hours before the 7 p.m. tipoff.

Curiously, their lone meeting in the eliminations was the first game of a Nov. 20 doubleheader, and Romeo blasted 33 points in that match although the Aces had the better of the Batang Pier that time, 123-104.

His previous career-high of 40 points also came in a one-game-only playdate on May 22, 2015 (Philippine Time) in Dubai, but Rain Or Shine survived his onslaught and clobbered GlobalPort in that tiff.

On the other hand, Romeo said that his early shootaround on Monday helped him shake off the jitters in his PBA semifinals debut.

He bared in particular, "Ang ginawa ko para mapalitan yung kaba ay maaga akong nag-shooting tapos nilagay ko sa isip ko, 'Nag-hard work ako. Hindi pwedeng sumira yung kaba sa akin. Gagawin ko yung best ko para sa team.'"

Asked on how he got to score in bunches against the Aces' great defenders, Romeo, who made 41 points in only 21 shots, replied, "Hinahanap ko yung mga tira na pwede kong itira na hindi pilit."

However, he vowed that he and his fellow Batang Pier will not let their guard down against them come Game 2 on Wednesday night.

"Malayo pa yung series, so hindi kami pwede makuntento sa game na ito. I know hindi papayag ang Alaska na ganun yung game nila. I'm sure mag-a-adjust sila," Romeo said.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno