For assaulting opposing players in a fit of rage inside the basketball court last Tuesday following a referee call he didn’t like, Jose Rizal University Heavy Bomber guard John Amores was suspended indefinitely by the management committee of the National Collegiate Athletic Association.
Mancom representative Fr. Vic Calvo of Letran announced the punishment on Amores and the penalties on 13 other players at the end of a five-hour meeting on Wednesday.
The mancom reasoned out that the 23-year-old Amores should have been slapped with a lifetime ban for his misdeeds in the fourth quarter of the St. Benilde-JRU game, which forced organizers to declare the Blazers as the winner in their 98th National Collegiate Athletic Association men’s basketball tournament game at the FilOil-EcoOil Arena in San Juan.
But the 6’2” Amores was instead suspended indefinitely so that he will have a chance to change his ways, and maybe play again in the future.
“We want to serve justice, at the same time be merciful in implementing measures and sanctions. Puwede naming sabihin na lifetime ban. But you need to give a small window or door for the child to return, probably in the future,” said Calvo.
The controversial game was nearing its end, with Benilde leading, 71-51, when the referee whistled a foul on Amores for tripping Blazers’ cager Chris Flores during a play. The foul call sent Amores in fit of anger, charging the Benilde bench swinging and then dropping James Pasturan and Taine Davis to floor. Amores also hit CSB players Mark Sangco and Miguel Oczon during his rampage.
The mancom explained that during the incident, Amores also intentionally bumped and pointed a finger at the referee, disrespected JRU representative Paul Supan and other court officials, charged the CSB bench and made provocative gestures to instigate a fight.
In all, three CSB cagers and 11 from JRU will be suspended and banned from playing in their next games for their involvement in the fracas.
A three-game suspension will be meted on JRU’s William Sy Jr. for his dance moves while being pacified during the incident.
On the other hand, a two-game suspension will be meted on Sangco and Flores on the CSB side, for their participation in the brawl, along with Heavy Bomber Ryan Arenal for committing disrespectful acts of dancing as well.
CSB player Ladis Lepalam will be suspended for a game for also entering the playing court, along with other JRU cagers, namely Jason Tan, Joshua Guiab, Jason Celis, Marwin Dionisio, Jan Abaoag, Jonathan Medina, Karl de Jesus, and Christian Gonzales.
Amores also figured in a punching incident last July 26, when he reportedly hit University of the Philippines prospect Mark Belmonte during a preseason game organized by the University and Colleges Basketball League.
Officials of JRU have also suspended Amores indefinitely.
Supan said Amores will not play for the remainder of the season, nor participate in team practices. He added a separate internal inquiry of the matter will be conducted, consistent with the university’s rules and regulations, adding that their decision is separate from any verdict handed by the NCAA management committee.
NoWhereToGoButUP chairman Renan Dalisay, in a social media post, has asked school officials of JRU to take “proactive steps” to help Amores. He has written the school about the incident and that a case has been filed on the player.
In NCAA games on Wednesday, Gabriel Cometa’s missed attempt in the last three seconds allowed the Lyceum Pirates to escape with an 81-80 win over the San Beda Red Lions.
Omar Larupay knocked in 15 points, including the winning basket in the last seven seconds, as the Pirates went on to climb to third place with their 10-5 record. The Red Lions dropped behind at 9-5.
The Mapua Cardinals, led by Juaqui Garcia with 13 points, pummelled the Arellano University Chiefs, 67-47, to keep their Final Four semifinal hopes alive with their sixth win in 15 matches.