Perpetual Help head coach Myk Saguiguit is glad to see Kim Aurin step up when the team needed him in their do-or-die match against Emilio Aguinaldo College on Friday.

Kim Aurin celebrates after Perpetual pulls off a pulsating 63-60 win to secure the last play-in spot in NCAA Season 97 playoffs. (Photo from GMA NCAA)

Scoreless in the first two quarters, Aurin came alive in the second half and unloaded all of his 14 points to help the Altas repulse the Generals, 63-60, and catch the last bus to the play-in round.

Aurin also embraced his role as the team’s go-to guy, delivering big baskets down the stretch including a huge layup that gave Perpetual a five-point cushion. Kris Gurtiza drilled a three-pointer in the ensuing play but the slim advantage proved to be enough to keep EAC at bay.

“‘Yung mga kakampi niya alam na it’s Kim Aurin’s team kasi he’s gonna be looking for the draft na, so last year niya na ito,” said Saguiguit who also shared that he gave Aurin a little pep talk on Aurin prior to the do-or-die match.

“Sabi ko nga sa kanya bago sa game na ito, sabi ko Kim medyo so-so yung performance mo di ka masisilip ng maganda niyan mag pakita ka ngayon against EAC,” Saguiguit told Aurin. “Kung mabibigyan pa tayo ng pagkakataon, yung remaining games na ibibigay sa atin trabahuin mo ng maigi.”

Although Aurin hasn’t showed his full potential this season, he remains as one of the potent weapons for the Altas as their second-best scorer with 14.44 points per game which went with 5.22 rebounds and 1.5 assists.

Perpetual though will need more from Aurin if they wish to go deep in the playoffs especially that they will be facing a tough Arellano squad anchored on star center Justin Arana in another do-or-die game.

If it manages to win, Perpetual will also need to find enough firepower to beat the loser of the San Beda and College of St. Benilde clash to formally secure a spot in the Final Four.

“Meron silang kumpleto may small may wingman may shooter and then yung mga numbers na binibigay nung Justin Arana, it’s gonna be a big work talaga napakalaking trabaho,” said Saguiguit.

“Makapagpahinga lang sila ng maganda then we’ll prepare for Sunday’s game.”

Source: Manila Bulletin (