"THE CROWD DID IT FOR US" | Cone still marveled by raucous Ginebra fans

By Ivan Saldajeno

PASAY--Coach Tim Cone admitted to the media on Tuesday night that he was on the verge of giving up after seeing Ginebra fall to an early 0-2 hole against Star in the PBA Philippine Cup semifinals.

"There was a time in the middle of the series when I just honestly felt, 'Ubos na. Forget it. Let's go home. We're not gonna beat this team.' We were dragging in practice and in the pre-game meetings. I can feel it. I said, 'Man! I think we hit a wall here,'" he bared.

But every time the Barangay enter the arena, the crowd quickly goes wild, and it gives them a reason to forget the odds and just play on.

"We walk out of the court, and then, 'Waaaah!' And then everybody's all energized again because of the crowd going so crazy. They just drew from that energy," Cone continued.

Ginebra would win four of its last five games to steal a finals spot from Star. Ginebra clinched the Manila Clasico semis series with an 89-76 Game 7 rout in front of 20,221 people at the Mall of Asia Arena.

"[Star consultant] Jason Webb came up to me after the game and said, 'You were still able to do it.' And I said, 'We didn't do it. The crowd did it for us,'" Cone commended the Ginebra faithfuls.

Summarizing the semifinal series against the Hotshots, Cone said, "This series told us that we're never out of this series because of the energy the crowd brings to us. We want to keep it coming, because we're gonna need it against San Miguel."

The finals series between the Barangay and the Beermen, also known as crowd drawers, will begin on Friday night at the said venue, and a huge crowd turnout is expected there.

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