ST. Clare College Virtual Reality coach Jinino Manansala cried foul on what he felt was terrible officiating in the endgame of a slim 91-90 defeat to Petron-Letran in the 2019 PBA D-League on Tuesday.
The outspoken mentor contested the offensive foul whistled on Saints forward Junjie Hallare for what the referees felt was a moving screen against Knights winger Jerrick Balanza in the final 1.7 seconds.
"Sabi ni sir Bong Pascual [head of referees], panoorin namin yung replay. Nakita namin wala namang foul kay Hallare," he said. "Hinabol lang ni Hallare dahil pinwetan niya pero hindi eh. Sa ganoong sitwasyon, pag hinabol mo, 'yun ang foul na ok lang. Dapat hindi na lang siya pumito para wala nang problema."
Hallare himself believed that it was the wrong call.
"Di talaga kasi wala naman (na moving screen)," he said of his play when he tried to free up Rojay Santos for the go-ahead baseline bucket.
"May mali talaga sa tawag ng referee kaya medyo nagalit din ako. Nalungkot kasi nanghinayang ako sa laro namin kasi alam naming kayang ipanalo, pero dahil nga sa maling tawag ng referee, doon kami natalo.
"Di bale na matalo kami na nag-miss yung tira namin, pero yung ganoong tawag na di namin inaasahan na napakasama, doon kami talaga nagalit."
That infraction all but took the fight out of St. Clare as it bowed to its second straight defeat after winning its first four games.
Manansala said that his camp will file a letter of complaint to the Office of the Commissioner against the game officials to teach them a lesson moving forward.
"Gagawa kami ng letter of complaint para lang bigyan ng leksyon. Alam ko naghahanap-buhay din naman tayo. Ayaw ko rin naman silang mapasama, para matuto lang," he said.
"Tinanggap namin ang pagkatalo eh. Ituwid lang natin yung tawagan para next game, parehas lang ang tawagan."
Still, Manansala couldn't help but feel proud with how the Saints fought back from a 28-point deficit and almost stole the win in the endgame.
"Sabi ko nga nung halftime, we just have to play defense, pound the ball inside and from there, dahan-dahan makukuha natin yung gusto naming mangyari," he said.
That, to him, proves that the reigning NAASCU champs have what it takes to compete with the best collegiate teams and make it to the developmental ranks' playoffs.
"Hindi ako naaalarma sa dalawang sunod na talo namin," he said. "Magtatrabaho lang kami ng mabuti. Expect nila na itong team namin, lahat bibigyan ng magandang laban."