The Alaska Aces are among the hottest teams in the PBA right now, and they will put their win streak on the line against the San Miguel Beermen tomorrow night in Angeles City.
The Beermen are struggling in the early goings of the conference but have still managed to stay .500 through four games.
Catch this game live on October 24 at 6:45 pm, Manila time.
The San Miguel Beermen (2-2)
When life hands you Terrafirma Dyip, you should be able to take a win That’s exactly what the Beermen did last Monday, when they ended a two-game skid by defeating the winless Dyip 105-98. Before that, SMB lost to the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters, 87-83, and to the TNT Tropang Giga, 107-88.
Despite the win over Terrafirma, this conference has not been great to San Miguel. Already playing without June Mar Fajardo, the Beermen suffered another key loss with Terrence Romeo departing the bubble with a shoulder injury, which means that the next time the dynamic two-guard plays will be in the next conference.
Much of the scoring for the Beermen is currently on the shoulders of the likes of Marcio Lassiter, Arwin Santos, Alex Cabagnot, and Moala Tautuaa. Tautuaa, after getting embarrassed by JP Erram in the loss to TNT, rebounded and mopped the floor with Dyip’s frontcourt, which he roasted for 25 points to go with six rebounds and three assists.
Moala’s defense in the shaded area will be needed against Alaska, which is tops in the league in 2-point shot attempts per game.
The Alaska Aces (3-2)
The Aces are suddenly on a groove. After starting the season with back-to-back losses to TNT and the Meralco Bolts, Alaska has gone unbeaten in their last three games. The last time they were on the court, they edged out Rain or Shine in a thrilling 89-88 win last Thursday.
Center Kevin Barkley Ebona is slowly becoming a key figure for the Aces. The FEU product exploded for 24 points on an efficient 10-of-11 shooting from the field in Alaska’s 120-82 demolition job of the Blackwater Elite last Tuesday. Then he provided 10 points on 4-of-7 shooting against Rain or Shine.
Alaska entered the PBA bubble in Angeles City with so much uncertainty in the frontcourt, but Ebona, Abu Tratter, and Vic Manuel are doing a fantastic job of dispelling that notion. Manuel is leading the Aces this conference with 15.2 points per game, while Jeron Teng is second with 14.2 points.
Alaska is second overall so far this conference with a 46 FG%.
This SMB team is simply not the same of the one that we’ve seen win multiple championships in the past few years. It’s older and banged up, while Alaska is gaining momentum by starting to believe that they have the roster to compete with the favorites. Tautuaa is in for a long night, as Manuel and company will be wreaking havoc inside in this game, which Alaska wins, 90-86.