LETRAN coach Caloy Garcia hopes Knights star point guard Mark Cruz will learn from his mistakes in the endgame of the team’s 70-74 loss to Lyceum in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament on Friday.
The Knights coach benched Cruz midway through the fourth quarter after the usually unflappable playmaker committed two uncharacteristic errors when Letran was down, 57-60, and in the middle of a comeback.
"For his stature…he committed two straight turnovers. Sa akin, I wanted to win. It should also be a lesson to him na siya ang leader namin,” Garcia told Spin.ph. “The way he passed the ball and the way he played defense parang wala eh.”
Garcia never recalled Cruz, who finished with just six points on 2-of-6 shooting, five assists, one rebound, five three turnovers in 24 minutes, as the coach opted for an unlikely backcourt combination of McJour Luib and rookie Daryl Singontiko.
“After that nag-gamble na lang ako sa iba,” Garcia said. “Kung matatalo ka rin, at least you put players who want to win the game.”
“Gusto ko sana siya (Cruz) matuto,” he added. “At least next time he knows we need him a lot more. We need more of his leadership than that kind of game.”