NMRAA cagers bow out in quarterfinal round in ‘Palaro’ 2018

NORTHERN Mindanao Regional Athletic Association (NMRAA) basketball secondary boys made a promise to give coach James Racines a big blow-out in time of his birthday on Thursday.

Racines’ wards were on the verge of making their promise true, but one controversial call changed everything.

This, as his boys got outlasted via overtime play, 99-104 against Western Visayas in the 2018 Palarong Pambansa secondary boys basketball quarterfinal during the fourth day of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Vigan, Ilocos Sur.

"Naay dakong chance unta ang NMRAA kung wala to nahitabo kay sila gadala sa momentum," said Luis Lim, who was there as a loyal fan of Racines' team.

In a tight third quarter match, NMRAA was leading by two in the dying seconds.

A player from Western Visayas fell hard to the ground while on the drive against the tight defense of Ryab Morhe. But the referee awarded a three-point play in favor to the Negrenses.

With the result, a commotion ensued leading to the ejection of four players each from both teams.

Ejected NMRAA cagers were William Galendez, Sherwin Belardo, Milo Janao Jr. and Morhe.

Racines argued that Morhe had established a good defense and should not be whistled for a foul.

Despite the situation, Christian “Antman” Hosain stepped up for the NMRAA as he nailed the equalizer and sent the game into the extension period.

Western Visayas prevailed.

“I don’t blame it to my players, though they struggled in making the match against West Visayas as my birthday gift,” said Racines.

But, Racines’ boys surpassed NMRAA’s feat last year for making it to the quarterfinals.

This, as the NMRAA elementary boys absorbed a painful 20-65 debacle at the hands of West Visayas also in the quarterfinal.

“West Visayas was strong, but my boys had fought for it. Burned out na sab sila sa practice,” said coach Rene Ilogon.


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