After another heartbreak loss, Alaska import LaDontae Henton couldn’t help but to pin the blame on their lack of mental toughness.
“We need to be to be mentally focused down the stretch,” said Henton as his 41-point explosion went for naught as Alaska bowed to Rain or Shine, 117-114, in a hotly-contested game Saturday night.
Ironically, it was Henton who made a crucial turnover when they were just trailing by 4 at the 51-second mark of the fourth quarter, shutting down the Aces’ chance for a fightback.
Alaska actually had the game in the bag as it led by as much as 10 points at the start of the final salvo, only to surrender it with their series of turnovers that Rain or Shine’s Paul Lee and JR Quinahan easily converted to points.
Alaska also crumbled on defense after allowing the Elasto Painters shot at an efficient 58% in the field while having a field day at the three-point country by 61%.
“I think we just need to be mentally focus, play better defense, and stop making little mistakes,” he emphasized, echoing head coach Alex Compton’s pep talk in the dugout.
And despite losing Calvin Abueva and Sonny Thoss in endgame after fouling out, the Michigan native sees no problem in the officiating of the foul-plagued match.
“It is what it is. I heard it before I came into the league, some days it will be up, some days it will be down so you won’t know what will be the officiating,” said the Providence alum.
Known as the ‘Comeback Kids’ in the past conferences with their ability to rally, the Aces have become the ‘Heartbreak Kids’ following their endgame meltdowns that led to their 4 losses. – By Jason Mercene
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