MANILA, Philippines – The NCAA came down hard on those who participated in the brawl that marred Monday’s game between the Mapua Cardinals and the Emilio Aguinaldo College Generals.
A total of 17 players from both sides, plus three officials, were handed suspensions ranging from 1 game to indefinite sentences, according to an NCAA press release on Tuesday, September 23.
Fourth-year EAC point guard John Tayongtong, whose rough push off of Mapua’s CJ Isit precipitated the animosity, received a 5-game suspension, the highest among all players. Isit, who was on the receiving end of a clear right hook from Tayongtong after confronting him over the play, was not suspended.
(WATCH: EAC-Mapua NCAA game ends in brawl)
Leo Gabo, who rushed over to push Tayongtong in retaliation for the initial play, received the highest suspension for Mapua with four games. He was followed by Jomari Tubiano (3 games), Justin Serrano, James Galoso, Exeqiel Biteng and Andrew Estrella (2), plus Jerome Canaynay, Ronnel Villasenor and Darrel Magsigay (1). Jessie Saitanan, Joseph Eriobu and Jeson Cantos did not receive suspensions.
For EAC, Jan Jamon, Ariel Aguilar and Jack Arquero received three game suspensions while John Santos, Manelle Quilanita and Edsel Saludo were booked for two games. Faustine Pascual received one game while Jerald Serrano, Chris Mejos, Ai Indin and Jozhua General escaped suspension.
“The Mancom condemns in the highest level the unfortunate incident that occured (sic) in the Mapua-EAC game,” said NCAA Management Committee chairman Paul Supan of host Jose Rizal University in a release. “Hooliganism has no place in an established league like the NCAA. Proper sanctions based on league rules will be imposed accordingly.”
An email to the NCAA secretary’s office seeking clarity on how both teams could finish the remaining three games of the elimination round with depleted rosters wasn’t answered by Tuesday evening.
Joey Villar, who covers the NCAA beat for PhilStar, reports that both teams may have to forfeit their next games, adding that graduating players who cannot fulfill their suspensions in full will have to pay corresponding fines.
In addition to players, league commissioner Bai Cristobal announced that referees Molly de Luna, Menard Ballecer and Cholo Caoile will be fined and suspended indefinitely. This comes a day after Cristobal expressed his support for the referees’ handling of the game.
“The referee is on top of the situation and it was a non-call,” Cristobal said, referring to the shove by Tayongtong on CJ Isit.
(RELATED: NCAA Commissioner thinks referees handled EAC-Mapua brawl well)
The match was halted with 28.5 seconds remaining with the Generals declared the winner as they were up 86-77.
The incident made the league trend nationwide but for all of the wrong reasons, casting a negative light on the country’s oldest collegiate tournament. Afterwards, Isit spoke about the incident on Twitter.
“Dude caught me with a mean blow. I was not ready. I thought we were doubling. Lol. Im down to square tho. Tell me when,” said Isit. Squaring is an American slang term for fighting, and Isit, who revealed that he had been “knocked out” and suffered a sprained ankle later tweeted that the incident upset his mother.
Sprained ankle. Lost the game. Got knocked out. Ill be okay. Will live another day. Much love for the msgs. #itsmorefuninthephilippines— CJ isit (@iamISIT) September 22, 2014
“My mom read my tweet & got mad. She said im not like that. She right. What happens on the court stays on the court.”
Both teams are tied in the standings with a 4-11 record. – Rappler.com
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