With a system of sharing the ball playing to great effect, Blackwater on Saturday night scored a second win in the PBA Philippine Cup, but coach Ariel Vanguardia, still hot under the collar after an end-of-the-game incident with the opposing coach, was quick to temper expectations on his Bossing.
“It’s still too early into the tournament,” Vanguardia said after a 97-90 clipping of NorthPort at Ynares Center in Antipolo which made reporters ask whether Blackwater should now be regarded as a force to be reckoned with. “What we’re doing well, however, is we’re showing that we’re capable of competing.”
JVee Casio came through once again for the Bossing, scoring 22 points while dishing out five assists. Rookie Ato Ular chipped in 17 points and five boards as the perennial whipping boys rose to 2-1.
It was an impressive win to say the least, as it came against a side that was still smarting from its first defeat.
But the celebrations in the locker room were cut even before it could start, as Vanguardia and NorthPort’s Pido Jarencio had a verbal argument at midcourt, when Jarencio bumped Vanguardia and cursed the Blackwater coach for calling a timeout with six seconds left which the Batang Pier tactician took offense to.
“I extended my hand, and he bumped me. I felt disrespected,” Vanguardia said. “I flared up. I’m just human.”
Jarencio obviously felt offended, too, with a timeout called by Vanguardia and the outcome already beyond doubt. Making matters worse was that the Bossing didn’t launch an attempt when they returned to the floor.
“It would have been better if he hit me,” Vanguardia said.
But Vanguardia claimed that coaches already met about the matter, and said that he was ready to apologize to Jarencio for calling that timeout.
And also for his Bossing not taking a shot.
“I have high respect for coach Pido, and I am sorry if I offended you,” Vanguardia told reporters. “I also apologize if we didn’t attempt [a shot], but I never cursed you because I have such high respect for you.”
The incident certainly took something away from how good the Bossing played as they took care of the ball well, coughing up just 11 errors against NorthPort’s 20.
NorthPort got the goods from Robert Bolick, who had 21 points and nine rebounds. Jamie Malonzo tossed in a double-double of 14 and 13, while Roi Sumang had 16 points off the bench in the losing stand that had the Batang Pier sliding to 2-2.
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