Aldrech Ramos heeds the call, plays hero ball

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Mahindra sweet-shooting forward Aldrech Ramos took to heart veteran teammate Nino Canaleta’s halftime reminder to be aggressive, knocking down all 25 of his points in the 2nd half as the Enforcers beat powerhouse Alaska, 102-94 Monday night.

Ramos, the 6-foot-6 lanky stretch-four, finished the game with an 11-of-15 shooting clip to help Mahindra snap a 3-game losing skid and revive its playoff hopes in the Oppo-PBA Commissioner’s Cup.

“Sabi ni coach (Chito Victolero) na laruin ko lang yung game ko. Saka marunong naman mag-mix up ng minutes ng players si coach,” Ramos told sports scribes after the game.

Read: Mahindra, Blackwater swap bigs

Canaleta believe the Enforcers have a much better chance of winning games if Ramos gets to light the scoreboard.

No wonder, before leaving the dugout for the 2nd half, he came to remind the former Far Eastern University big man to be aggressive against the Aces.

“Kanina, nung halftime sabi ko sa kanya (Ramos) na hingin mo yung bola, maging agresibo ka,” Canaleta said.

“Eh di naman magsasalita yun eh, ganun ganun lang siya, buti nag-respond siya.”

Read: Gary David can help Mahindra’s playoff push says Chito Victolero

Canaleta, who finished the game with 17 points and 4 rebounds, admitted that Ramos is 1 player a defender can’t leave open from the outside.

“Hindi mo talaga puwedeng pabayaan sa labas kasi talagang shooter, saka soft touch talaga kahit saan siya,” noted the 34-year-old, 5-time PBA Slam Dunk champion.

The win helped Mahindra snap its 3-game skid as it improved to an even 4-4 record, in a tie with idle Star Hotshots in the middle of the standings.

The Aces, meantime, dropped into a tie with the Barangay Ginebra Kings at joint 3rd place.

It was their 2nd straight loss after a strong 5-1 start this conference. – By Richard Dy

Follow this writer on Twitter: @richava


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