|With just one text message, Jio Jalalon went on fire. Nikki Collantes|
By Ivan Saldajeno
QUEZON CITY--Thanks to a simple text message, Jio Jalalon went on a zone.
Jalalon played his best game yet in the PBA, leading Magnolia to a 106-99 win in Game 3 of the Philippine Cup semifinals against NLEX at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Wednesday night.
[Related Story: Jalalon explodes as Magnolia takes 2-1 semis lead vs NLEX]
"Pagkatapos ng game sa MOA (Game 2), minessage niya ako, so tumaas yung confidence sa sarili ko," Jalalon told reporters after the game. "Nagpapasalamat ako kay Coach Chito [Victolero] na binigyan ako ng tiwala, kaya nagagawa ko rin yung talent ko."
Victolero bared the specific content of the message.
"I told him that in order for him to establish his name in the PBA, he needs this series para kahit papaano makuha yung momentum niya at saka yung confidence," said Victolero.
"The Bus Driver" indeed delivered, going 10-of-13 from the field and 4-of-5 from three-point land for 25 points.
"I'm thankful and happy kasi nag-respond si Jio doon sa challenge ko," Victolero continued.
Paul Lee, who is usually the top scorer for the Hotshots, eventually gave way.
"That's his game," Lee said. "He took over from the start. Yun talaga ang game ni Jio."
With Magnolia up, 2-1, in the best-of-seven series, Jalalon hopes, "Sana magtuluy-tuloy pa ito kasi di pa namin nakukuha yung rhythm namin. Buti na lang na-sustain namin yung energy nila."
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