ARVIN Tolentino wishes that the UAAP Board of Directors (BOD) sympathizes with him and downgrade his disqualifying foul to just an unsportsmanlike foul.
Tolentino argued that he inadvertently hit Sean Manganti on the head with an arm that led to his ejection with three minutes and 43 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter.
"Natamaan ko si Sean pero di ko naman sadya. Wala akong intensyon na saktan siya. I was going for the ball tapos pag swing niya, dumiretso sa mukha niya yung kamay ko," explained the FEU forward as he hit the showers with a team-best 19 points, four rebounds, and two assists.
"For me personally, parang too much naman yung disqualifying foul, pero I respect their decision. Sa akin lang, I don’t think na ganun naman kalala yun."
Tolentino shared that he even tried to plead his case and apologize to Manganti, but the referees restricted him from approaching his Adamson counterpart.
"Ayaw nga ng mga referees. Sabi ko, 'Ref, magsosorry lang ako kasi di ko sinasadya.' Sabi nila, 'Wag na.'," he said.
But Tolentino is still hoping for the best.
"I hope lang na i-review. Gusto ko sana ma-review nila. Sabi sa akin ni (FEU athletic director) Mark (Molina), ia-appeal eh. Sana isipin nila, 'Mabait si Arvin.'," he said.
If the call holds, Tolentino will be serving a one-game suspension in FEU's next game, which will be against his former school and defending champion Ateneo on Wednesday.
"Kung ma-downgrade man, masaya ako. Kung hindi, wala rin kaming magagawa. Yun lang talaga ang ipinagdadasal ko na sana ma-downgrade yung ejection," he said.
Curiously, it was the second time Tolentino was ejected in an FEU game against Adamson.
Last year, he kicked Dawn Ochea in the groin area when he fell to the ground in the two team's first round clash -- leading to an unsportsmanlike foul and his eventual ejection.
Putting his disqualification behind, Tolentino was quite glad that his fellow Tamaraws held the fort and came away with an 88-85 overtime victory over the erstwhile league leader Soaring Falcons to string their first winning streak this UAAP Season 81.
"Big win for us," he sighed. "Undefeated yung Adamson. Kailangan talaga namin yung panalo ngayon dahil sa nangyari sa amin sa UST and UE. Masaya kami at proud ako sa teammates ko na naiwan ko kanina."
Though it's still early to tell, Tolentino is hoping that these back-to-back wins could at least rectify the struggles that has plagued FEU from the start of the season as it tries to maintain its consistency much to the desire of coach Olsen Racela.
"Hindi kami pwede makuntento kung ano man yung nilaro namin. Kailangan namin maging consistent especially this season kasi lahat ng teams talagang unpredictable eh. Marami pa rin kaming kailangan iimprove, pero yung iba medyo nabawi na, but again, we can’t be contented," he said.