Alaskan Sports

Alaska Aces to step up in Racal’s absence – SunStar Philippines

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THE Alaska Aces has suffered a huge blow after the team learned that wingman Kevin Racal will be sitting out the rest of the season because of a complete tear to the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) of his knee.

Already down 0-2 (win-loss) in the standings, the Aces now have to scramble to make adjustments heading to their game against the guard-laden Magnolia Hotshots on Saturday, Oct. 17.

“It’s for our guards and wings to step up defensively for him. All my questions and set-up are defense so you can tell how much of a hit it is for the team without Kevin, that being his No. 1 strength,” said Alaska head coach Jeffrey Cariaso, when he bared the unfortunate development on Thursday, Oct. 15.

“Again, things happen. This is basketball. There are guys who I think are raring and ready to step up,” he added.

The Letran product suffered the injury during the Aces’ first game this season against TNT, when he slipped on the floor while pursuing the Tropang Giga’s Jayson Castro.

Racal took a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) test which showed a complete tear of the ACL. The news came as a shock to Cariaso and the rest of the coaching staff.

“The tests we’ve asked him to do, he’s been able to do,” said Cariaso. “So, it’s weird that the physical testing isn’t equivalent to the result. But when you look deeper into the MRI, that’s where you’ll see the injury.”

Racal would be evaluated by renowned orthopedic surgeon Raul Canlas this weekend to see what his next steps will be.

For Cariaso and the rest of the Aces, they will try their best to trudge forward without one of their comrades.

“Right now, we’re still bearing the news that we won’t have him for the rest of the bubble,” said Cariaso. (JNP)

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