JRU coach Louie Gonzales frustrated over officiating in tough loss to Benilde

Published November 8, 2023 11:28am

Updated November 8, 2023 12:01pm

Jose Rizal University head coach Louie Gonzales aired his frustrations over the officiating during their 84-81 loss to De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde that dealt them their second defeat in a row.

The game saw two personalities being handed with ejections, one of whom was Gonzales himself who was thrown out of the game with three minutes left in the second quarter after getting two technical fouls.

Benilde’s Mark Sangco was also ejected with 3.4 seconds left in the third quarter for committing an unsportsmanlike foul. Prior to that, he was called for a technical foul early in the second frame.

In all, four technical fouls were called by the game officials alongside a number of play reviews due to physicality from both squads.

These, according to Gonzales, played a huge factor as to how his players executed their game plan, stressing it affected their mental toughness.

“Sa akin, talagang sobrang pangit ng tawag. I feel na right from the get-go hindi na kami pinaglaro ng basketball, pinigilan kami,” Gonzales told GMA News Online in an interview.

“Cino-control ko na ‘yung mga players ko pero mentally draining na rin for the athletes eh. Kawawa na ‘yung mga players.”

(For me, the calls were not good. I feel that right from the get-go, we were not allowed to play basketball, we were being stopped. I am controlling my players but it’s also mentally draining for the athletes. It’s bad for the players.)

Gonzales stressed there was never a bad blood between the two teams, adding that it’s just the poor officiating that “adds colors” to the narrative.

Gonzales also said that it has been the brand of JRU to play hard and with their heart, but reiterated that they are not playing dirty.

“Alam mo wala naman kaming problema ng Benilde eh, ang nagiging problema ko talaga ay ‘yung officiating. That’s one thing that we expected,” Gonzales added.

“We prepared so much for this game knowing na kailangang-kailangan naming manalo for a better standing pero kung ‘yung mga referees natin ay co-control-in ‘yung laro, talagang walang mangyayari. In that game, tatlong unsportsmanlike fouls, apat na technical right from the get-go, paano kami lalaban do’n?”

(We have nothing against Benilde. Our problem really is officiating. That’s one thing we expected. We prepared so much for this game knowing we need to win for a better standing but if the referees will control the game, nothing will happen. In that game, three unsportsmanlike fouls, four technicals right from the get-go, how will we fight there?)

The loss was a tough blow for the Heavy Bombers as it sent them to their back-to-back defeats and to fifth place after being at the solo third spot just days ago.

Still, Gonzales was proud of the fight shown by his wards against the Blazers, crawling back from 15 points down and tying the game at 62-all after a Ry De La Rosa triple.

However, Benilde found every answer with Will Gozum delivering the game-winning block to highlight his season-high scoring of 27 points, five rebounds, and two blocks.

“I commended my boys. I know na hindi sila sanay na wala ako doon, especially sa gano’ng manner pero nag-stick sila sa isa’t isa.”

(I commended my boys. I know they’re not used to me being not there, especially in that manner but they stuck with each other.)

—JKC, GMA Integrated News

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