Even after comeback win, Letran not happy with 'unfair' officiating

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Jul 22, 2015 06:53 PM
Even after win, Letran not happy with 'unfair' offiaciating
COMING THROUGH. Letran faced the first adversity of the season in the form of tighter officiating.

Colegio de San Juan de Letran is off to its best start in nearly a decade at 4-0.

Utilizing non-stop full-court pressure to suck the life out of their opponents, the Knights have ascended to the top of the leaderboard. However, they almost crashed right back down to earth in their most recent outing.

With the exception of their ridiculous final frame, the Intramuros-based school was getting beat by San Sebastian College-Recoletos last Tuesday at the San Juan Arena. The frustration was evident as even first-time head coach Aldin Ayo lost his cool and put his hands on a game official during the third quarter.

Asked about his actions that incurred a technical foul, but may have also been used as grounds for ejection, Ayo told ABS-CBN Sports, "No comment ako. If you have nothing good to say, wala na lang."

The stat sheet showed that Letran had 18 total fouls, around their average, but the naked eye showed that most of the whistles were blown in the backcourt while they were enforcing their press. Ayo's outburst was not the only time he showed his frustrations regarding playcalling and both his coaching staff and players were also not shy in letting out their dismay.

One of the most vocal Knights in calling out the referees right in the middle of the game was top-gunner Rey Nambatac. "Nung first quarter pa lang, parang elementary yung tawagan," he told ABS-CBN Sports.

He continued, "Nung first three games, hindi kami tatawagan ng foul hanggang 'di natutumba yung kalaban. Ngayon, konting sundot lang, foul na."

While Nambatac shared that they are happy they were able to adjust by taking their physicality down a notch, he also pointed out that those same calls weren't being made on their end of the court. "Walang tinatawag para sa amin. Unfair sa amin," he said.

Still, Ayo kept reminding his boys to simply continue playing their game. "Sabi ko sa kanila, 'Wag kayo ma-disappoint, wag kayo ma-frustrate, trabaho naming mga coaches yan, just keep on playing,'" he said.

Letran did continue playing their game and came out on top in the end. As a parting shot, their first-time head coach said they will not be changing their identity just because of tighter officiating as he said, "Hindi naman (kami magbabago). Ganun pa rin. Kapag ganun na lang ulit sa game, saka na lang maga-adjust ng konti."

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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