EAC coach after loss to Arellano: ‘The referees decided the game’

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Sep 22, 2017 09:05 PM
EAC coach after loss to AU: ‘The referees decided the game'
QUESTIONABLE CALL. EAC's chances against Arellano were limited by referees' calls that didn't go their way.

Emilio Aguinaldo College head coach Ariel Sison is the latest to have something to say about officiating in the ongoing NCAA 93 Men’s Basketball Tournament.

“I think it wasn’t fair. The referees decided the game,” he told reporters after his Generals surrendered a 79-84 decision to Arellano University on Friday. “It should be the players who do that.”

Sison was generally pointing to the huge disparity in fouls given and free throws taken. “I’m not satisfied with the way they managed the game today,” he expressed.

The Chiefs fished 31 fouls from their opponents and were awarded 47 free throws for their troubles.

Conversely, the Generals fished 12 fouls from their opponents and were awarded 12 free throws.

More specifically, the mentor mentioned how the last two minutes played out.

Sidney Onwubere’s triple neared EAC to within 74-75 with 1:52 remaining and then played standout defense on Arellano’s Lervin Flores at the other end.

With nowhere to go, Flores took a step forward and just jumped upward, taking Onwubere to the air with him. Game officials apparently saw contact in the play and called a foul on the latter.

The Generals’ captain disagreed with the call and not long after, was slapped with a technical foul for continuous complaining. As that was his fifth foul, he was forced back to the locker room.

The Chiefs took full advantage of Onwubere’s absence and came away with the win.

Sison had other thoughts about it, however. “'Di pwede na technical, one point na lang yun. Traveling naman talaga e kasi nag-fake siya, tapos nag-step siya ng isa pa,” he said.

Asked if referees explained their call, he answered, “Wala. ‘Di ko maintindihan. Ayaw nila e. I was so frustrated, ‘di ko alam kung bakit nagkaganoon.”

He then continued, “Okay lang naman kung matalo kami na talo. Pero ganoon na crucial, tatawagan ka ng technical foul? I don’t know.”

Making what happened all the more painful, a win could have catapulted EAC onto a share of third-place. “We wanted to win the game because this is the only way we can move to the Final Four. Now, I don’t know what will happen,” the head coach said.

Sison follows San Beda College head coach Boyet Fernandez to express disappointment with the officiating.

Nearly two weeks ago, Fernandez was suspended for comments he made after a flareup involving Red Lion Robert Bolick and Carlo Young of College of St. Benilde.

Now, the Generals’ mentor said he is prepared for whatever would come. As he put it, “I don’t know how they would react to this comment and if they’ll penalize me. I’ll just be ready for that.”

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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