UNIVERSITY of Perpetual Help coach Aric del Rosario rued his players’ failure to use non-penalty fouls during Jose Rizal University's final possession on Wednesday, allowing the Bombers to escape with a 62-61 win.
The Altas still had two fouls to give in the endgame, which they could’ve used to disrupt the Heavy Bombers’ final play that ended with Dave Sanchez hitting the game-winner off a miss by Philip Paniamogan.
“Ininstruct namin na fumoul na kayo, pero hindi sinunod,” a disappointed Del Rosario said after the game.
An Earl Thompson breakaway layup had earlier given the Altas their last taste of the lead at 61-60 with 11.3 seconds left, putting Perpetual one defensive stop short of victory.
With the Bombers calling timeout, Del Rosario reminded his boys of the fouls they could afford to give up without sending JRU to the foul line. The instructions obviously fell on dear ears.
Instead, the Bombers managed two attempts in their last play, one by Paniamogan and the second one by Sanchez, which sealed the Bombers’ third win in six games.
“Yung sitwasyon kanina, sure win na yun eh,” Del Rosario rued as his team lost for the first time in four games, leaving defending champion San Beda (5-0) as the lone undefeated team in Season 90 of the NCAA.
Del Rosario also lamented the Altas’ lack of teamwork - supposedly their strength as they went to the game averaging a league-best 20 assists per game.
The Las Piñas-based dribblers dished out just nine against the Bombers.
“Yung players ko, parang nag-aagawan sa puntos kahit wala sa lugar,” Del Rosario said. “Ang daming transition points ng JRU kasi resulta yun ng pag-tira namin ng forced shots.”