ONE can't fault Santi Santillan for feeling down following 1Bataan Risers' runner-up finish in the Chooks-to-Go 3x3 Asia Pacific Super Quest.
The former La Salle forward shouldered the blame for his endgame gaffes, which he believed cost the Philippine side the crown.
The Risers were called for a technical foul for delay of game after Santillan refused to pick up the ball as Travis Franklin sued for a timeout his side didn't have. That led to Keita Suzuki tying the game at 20 at the 15-foot line in the final minute.
Santillan also overplayed on defense in the clutch, leading to Masahiro Komatsu getting freed and drilling the game-winning long bomb with 33 seconds to spare.
That spoiled his five-point output in the championship round as Bataan squandered an 18-13 advantage with 2:34 left.
But as tough as the defeat was, Santillan is looking at the experience as a learning lesson, especially with the Risers also earning a ticket to the Doha Masters of the 2019 Fiba 3x3 World Tour from April 18 to 19.
"Pinakanatutunan ko na huwag ka mag-relax. Lahat ng possession dito, importante," he said.
The Cebuano banger also thanked his teammates Alvin Pasaol, Karl Dehesa, and Franklin for lifting his spirits up following those mental lapses as he hopes to make up for it in the Qatar tilt.
"Nandyan yung mga teammates ko at naging positive yung mga sinasabi nila sa akin. Syempre yung experience na ito, madadala natin sa ibang bansa at ang laking tulong nito para sa Doha," he said.
"Hindi ko inaasahan ito, pero palagi naman ako nagpe-pray kay Lord God para sa blessings. Gagawin ko ang lahat para sa pangarap."