Meneses on JRU's 2OT loss: 'Ito yung pinakamasakit talaga'
Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Sep 09, 2016 04:40 PM
THE ONE THAT GOT AWAY. JRU had several chances to put away Perpetual, but fell short every time.
Coming off perhaps their biggest victory in recent memory, one that completed an elimination round sweep of modern-day dynasty San Beda College, Jose Rizal University let a crucial contest slip away on Friday.
Interviewed after their bitter double-overtime defeat to University of Perpetual Help, coach Vergel Menseses lamented, “Ito, almost a won ballgame na. Sa akin, hindi ko na palulusutin yun, patay na yun.”
He also added, “Sayang lang talaga.”
Indeed, the Heavy Bombers were well on their way to a win and led by seven inside the last two minutes before allowing seven unanswered points from their opponents that tied the tally and forced overtime. There, Teytey Teodoro granted them a two-point advantage with 16 seconds remaining only to see Bright Akhuetie’s offensive rebound and putback made another extra period necessary.
There, Perpetual went on an 11-0 rush to take the lead that would eventually turn into a much-needed win for them.
On the other hand, JRU dropped to 9-7 – still behind 9-5 and fourth-running Mapua Institute of Technology and just a hair ahead of 8-7 and sixth-running Colegio de San Juan de Letran. “We could have won in regulation and in the first overtime, but we could not make a defensive stop, we could not get the rebound while they were diving for the loose balls,” Meneses continued to rue.
A win would have kept the Bombers breathing down the necks of the Cardinals for the fourth-seed, but instead, their fate may now very well be out of their hands. “Ito yung pinakamasakit talaga. Okay lang sa EAC (Emilio Aguinaldo College), kasi makikita mo the whole game, maganda ang nilaro ng EAC,” Meneses expressed.
The fiery mentor was referring to their close loss to the Generals a week ago. The Generals, and now the Altas, are the only teams who have downed the Bombers in the second round.
Still, Meneses said their 5-2 record in the second round means nothing if they don’t make the playoffs. And as he sees it, Mapua will remain ahead of them for the fourth and final playoff berth as he said, “Slim chance na (kami). If nanalo kami ngayon, malaki pa tsansa,” he said.
He then continued, “Kaso hindi. I don’t think Mapua will let this slip away kasi they are playing really well.”
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