THERE was no bench-clearing melee this time in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament.
Four days after the ill-fated match between Emilio Aguinaldo College-Mapua was marred by a brawl, a no-bearing game between San Sebastian and Lyceum nearly turned ugly on Friday after a collision by the Stags’ CJ Perez and the Pirates’ Guy Mbida.
With the Stags way ahead, Perez drove to the basket and unintentionally hit Mbida on the neck late in the fourth quarter.
But Pirates skipper Shane Ko, who watched the game from the sidelines after being out for the season due to a lingering skin infection, was confident nothing unfortunate was going to happen as the entire team got a briefing from school management prior to the match.
“Hindi naman (worried) kasi before the game, kinausap na kami na dapat walang mangyaring katulad nung EAC tsaka Mapua,” Ko said in a chat with Spin.ph after the game. “Kaya kumpiyansa ako na walang mangyayaring ganun.”
True enough, before anything could happen, cooler heads prevailed even before the referees intervened.