Mariano: It would’ve been a different story had the shot gone in

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Photo by Noy Morcoso III

MANILA, Philippines – With the championship on the line, the ball went into the hands of University of Santo Tomas forward Aljon Mariano.

Six seconds left, Mariano took the ball at the top of the key off the inbound pass by Jeric Teng.

The clock ticked, Mariano, heavily criticized for his poor performance in this year’s Finals, had the opportunity to silence his naysayers with the game winning shot.

As Mariano was about to put the move on La Salle big man, Norbert Torres, Teng, probably the one everyone from the Growling Tigers wanted to shoot the last shot, had asked for the ball back from the right wing.

Mariano, determined to go for the win, refused before creating separation from his defender for a missed jumper as the game went into overtime where the Archers eventually won, 71-69.

“I decide on the things that I do. The shot almost went in. If it did, then it would have been a different story,” said Mariano in Filipino as he was being blamed in social media for his team’s loss. “My shot was okay,” he added.

“The play was really for Karim (Abdul). The last six seconds was really for Karim. No matter what happened, win or lose, it was his ball.  What happened was that Karim was denied so Aljon had to move out but what Aljon should have done was he should have attacked the basket,” said UST assistant coach Estong Ballesteros, who filled in for head coach Pido Jarencio during the postgame interview moments after the Growling Tigers let the game and history slip by their fingertips Saturday night.

Mariano missed all of his eight shots from the field and committed a turnover with under 30 seconds in extra session that eventually led to the game-winning basket by Almond Vosotros.

He did, however, have 10 rebounds and part of his three points was two crucial free throws that tied the game at 65 with 53.8 seconds left.

“It was only a wrong decision, it was a mistake,” said Mariano, considered to have been one of UST’s most reliable scorers since last season.

Related Stories:

La Salle rallies past UST in OT to win UAAP title

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  • jediknight

    sana binalik na lang ke jeric ang bola! kund di ka ba naman saksakan ng kabobohan at kabwakawan di panalo sana kayo! dapat alis na kayo sa team isama mo si jarencio!

  • promons

    Then Abdul tried to be a hero himself with the last 3 possessions in OT. Bara bara na. Sus, so much for poise. Gragraduate na lang import ng UST (parang NU, aalis na lang lahat) wala pang napapala. Chamba lang talaga yong championship ni Jose, err, Pido noong 2006. Di na nasundan eh.

  • Kamoteng Baging

    My shots are ok. Pag di na shoot, di ok.

    “Mariano: It would’ve been a different story had the shot gone in”

    Could have, should have.

  • Rafaelito Solangon

    Yah tama ka kung hindi mo binuwaya!!!

  • dos_sentimos

    Buwakaw! 0 out of 8 the whole game may gana pang tumira ng tres? Buwakaw!

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