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Letran's Batiller blames self for missed championship-winning layup

MANILA, Philippines – Bonbon Batiller did not hold back on himself after costing the Letran Knights a chance at an improbable sweep against the San Beda Red Lions.

With San Beda up one, 77-76, after a clutch and-one layup by MVP Calvin Oftana, the graduating Batiller got open down low in the final 5.1 seconds, but his layup only went straight up and missed the rim.

As a result, he clipped James Canlas to stop the clock, which got him fouled out.

The Mythical Five member Canlas then calmly sank the game-sealing free throws as the three-time defending champions Lions lived on to fight for Game 3 on Tuesday, November 19.

"Isang shot na lang, isang layup ko na lang, t*****a, champion na, s**t," Batiller let loose after the game. "Para sa akin, ako ang nagpatalo sa game."

(Just one shot, one layup left, son of a b***h, we would have been champions, s**t. For me, we lost because of me.)

"Nahihiya ako sa teammates ko kasi, isang shot na lang, isang layup ko na lang. Kung na-convert ko 'yun, hindi ganoon ang takbo ng game. Pero p*******a, nadulas talaga."

(I feel ashamed for my teammates because it would've taken just one shot, one layup from me. If I converted that, the game wouldn't have gone that way. But son of a b***h, it really slipped.)

After leading the Knights' Game 1 victory with 12 points, Batiller followed up with an 11-marker outing in Game 2, but also went scoreless in the final frame.

Despite fizzling out in the endgame, the former University of the East stalwart is just relieved that his teammates still have his back.

"Wala akong narinig [na masama] sa mga teammates ko," he said. "Ganoon ako kabilib sa mga teammate ko. Ganoon nila ako kamahal, ganoon ko sila kamahal."

(I didn't hear anything negative from my teammates. That's how much I admire them. That's how much I love them and how they love me back.)

"Wala silang sinabi sa 'kin na negative...puro positive lang. Ganoon talaga eh, 'di para sa 'min 'yung laro."

(They didn't say anything negative to me...just positive things. That's just how it is, the game wasn't for us.)

"Naninindig 'yung balahibo ko. Sobrang blessed ako kasi napunta ako sa pamilyang ito, sa team namin."

(I had goosebumps. I'm so blessed that I ended up in this family, in this team.)

Heading to Game 3 with one more chance to win it all, Batiller is more than ready to forget his flub and prepare for one last shot at redemption.

"Positive lang," he said. "Sa practice, kailangan ipakita namin kung ano'ng ipapakita namin sa Game 3. Kailangan na namin simulan doon."

(We're just positive. In practice, we just need to show what we need to show in Game 3. We need to start there.) – Rappler.com