MPBL: No Gab Banal, No Chris Gavina in Bacoor Strikers’ game vs host team Caloocan Supremos

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THE Bacoor Strikers will be missing key pieces in their game against the Caloocan Supremos on Friday at the Caloocan Sports Complex.

Gab Banal, the reigning MVP, will not be able to play as he’ll be playing for the Mighty Sports team, the country’s representative to the William Jones Cup tournament.

To make things worse, Chris Gavina, the team’s head coach, will also not be able to call the shots for the Strikers as he’ll be helping out Rain or Shine — where he serves as an assistant coach — in their out-of-town game.

Assistant coach Aldrin Morante, former head coach of the Muntinlupa Cagers and Pampanga Lanterns, will handle the team in lieu of Gavina.

Even Oping Sumalinog, the team captain of the squad, will miss the game as he is attending his sibling’s wedding while Mark Montuano will be a doubtful starter as he is feeling the effects of dehydration.

This means the Strikers will be undermanned when they face the Caloocan Supremos on Friday’s 8:30 p.m. encounter.

“Ang hirap,” Morante told FOX Sports Philippines. “Pero itutuloy ko yung game plan na binuo ni Coach Chris kasi siya pa rin naman nagpaensayo. I just hope everybody on the team will step up.”

Morante will be calling the shots for the team for the first time since he last coached the Lanterns in their final elimination game last season and it turned out he’s facing a more challenging role in his return to the coaching scene as pinch-hitter.