Rain or Shine simply lacks the experience to keep up with Magnolia in their PBA Philippine Cup semi-final series.
Rookie Javee Mocon, sophomore Rey Nambatac, Kris Rosales, Norbert Torres and Ed Daquioag were significant in the first two games until their lack of playoff experience were exposed in the next three games. They combined for a woeful 8-of-29 shooting for 29 points in Game 5.
And it's taking its toll on the E-Painters, who blew a two-game lead and now trail the Hotshots, 3-2, in the best of seven series.
"Mas experienced yung mga taga-Magnolia when it comes to this kind of atmosphere and most of our guys are bagito so less experience when it comes to this," Belga lamented after Wednesday's 82-74 loss in Game 5.
It was the E-Painters' third straight setback in the series after victories in Games 1 and 2.
Belga said their young players must get used to the pressure of the playoffs and deliver when the going gets tough.
Belga hopes their youngs will make a difference in Game 6 on Friday as ROS tries to hang on to force a deciding seventh game.
Game 7, if necessary, is set Sunday night at the Mall of Asia Arena.
"Hindi ito yung time para umayaw ka," he said. "Sabi ko nga sa kanila, pag umabot to sa Game 7, ito yung hindi mo makakalimutan sa buhay mo.
"And All-Filipino tournament ito. Next conference, di ka na magmamatter kasi may import ka na magdodominate. Ito talaga yung pinaglalabanan sa liga, yung All-Filipino Cup," Belga added. (JT)