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Ronjay Enrile's no-timeout gamble pays off as Pasig holds off QC in crunch time

Marlon Monte was one of the heroes for the Pirates in the upset. MPBL (file photo)
By Ivan Saldajeno

BINAN--Pasig thought it was set to upset Quezon City in style on Thursday night after building a 15-point cushion, 85-70, with 6:55 remaining and eventually holding to an 88-74 advantage with 4:54 to play.

But the Capitals came up with a 19-6 run to trim the gap to just one point with 1:18 left.

Interestingly, the head coach of the Pirates, Ronjay Enrile, opted not to use a timeout, something uncharacteristic of what other coaches would usually do in this situation.

"Sabi ko dahil sa tiwala ko sa players ko, 'Ayokong mag-timeout. I want you to cherish that moment na ginawa niyo yung fight niyo hindi sa dahil nag-coach ako sa inyo.' Yun lang ang pinakasabi ko sa kanila," Enrile explained to Dugout Philippines the said move.

He even reiterated that to one of his key players.

"I even talked to Argel [Mendoza]. Sinabi ko, 'Argel, hindi ako magta-timeout. Gawan mo ng paraan kung paano mo ma-o-overcome yan,'" Enrile further bared.

The said gamble eventually paid dividends as Pasig toughened its defense down the stretch and finally held off QC at the Alonte Sports Arena.

"We have to resurrect sa nangyayari sa amin nung previous games para maibalik namin yung mga pangalan ng mga players namin kasi we're on the losing side. New year, new start, new beginning... lahat na ng new na pwedeng isipin, yun lang yung inisip namin," Enrile, whose squad snapped a five-game losing streak that brought them further to the bottom of the team standings, shared his motivation for the game.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno