MANILA, Philippines—From being on the verge of defeat and a 0-2 hole in the 2019 PBA Commissioner's Cup finals, San Miguel Beer instead managed to hack out a 127-125 triumph over TNT KaTropa in double-overtime on Wednesday.
One of the most crucial plays came in the dying seconds of the first overtime period, when Chris Ross rebounded the ball off a missed free throw by Troy Rosario, then tossed a pinpoint pass to a streaking Alex Cabagnot on the other end.
Cabagnot nailed the lay-up just before the buzzer sounded, allowing the Beermen to knot the count at 114. From there, they pounced on the absence of TNT import Terrence Jones, and made enough stops against Jayson Castro in the end game to pull off the victory and tie the best-of-7 series at one game apiece.
For Ross, their play that forced a second overtime was almost second nature.
"It's just me and Alex, we've been playing together for so long," said Ross, who finished Game 2 with 25 points on 7-of-11 shooting from behind the arc. "I saw that he had the step on Jayson, and it looked like he wanted to go to the three."
"But I threw it towards the basket, because all we needed was two, so I kinda led him so he can go back in for a lay-up, and he got the lay-up in right before the buzzer," he added.
"So, it's just a chemistry thing with me and Alex. We've been doing it for so long."
Cabagnot also had a solid game, tallying 19 points and 7 assists as the San Miguel backcourt came alive.
"He (Ross) knew I was making a sprint to the basket, and he just lobbed it over. We do that all the time in practice, we train situations like that at practice. I'm glad it transpired," he said of their crucial play.
Both veteran guards were quick to move on from their win, however, as Game 3 of the finals is already set for Friday. As thrilling as the game was, the Beermen know they have plenty to work on after losing hold of a 17-point lead and coming close to defeat in regulation.
"We have a big week this week. We have 2 more games coming up, and we can't sit on our laurels. We just have to keep the faith, keep our head down, stay humble, continue to always try to manifest different schemes, and hopefully our fortunes take a turn," said Cabagnot.
For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website.