Blackwater Elite head coach Bong Ramos did not hide his disappointment with his bench players’ ineffectiveness following their 109-116 loss – their second in a row – to a well-deployed Alaska Aces, Sunday night.
All five starters – Poy Erram, Henry Walker, Mike DiGregorio, Nard Pinto, and Allein Maliksi – provided what was needed from them as they all scored in bunches, but the same could not be said for their supporting cast.
Of the six players that came off the bench, it was only Paul Zamar (10 points, eight rebounds), Mac Belo (four points), and Rabeh Al-Hussaini (five points) who delivered. Roi Sumang, Raymar Jose, and James Sena all went scoreless.
“Naging problema ko ngayon bench ko,” rued the veteran mentor.
“Every time nagro-rotate ako ng player medyo gumegewang kami. ‘Di kami naging consistent … Start of the game we controlled the game – siyempre kailangan ko ipahinga yung starters ko – pag-rotate ko medyo gumewang kami.”
Ramos also noted what he thinks were missed calls in the end-game, which for him were crucial as it had been when his Elite were coming back from 11 points down to just three, 106-103, with 1:23 left in the game.
“May mga crucial na hindi kami napaburan ng onti – breaks of the game, kaya biglang lumayo ulit,” he said. “Yung mga players ko, nagpipilit na humabol. They tried their best, [pero] napapagod din naman yan, tao lang yan.
“Talagang ganun e. ‘Di naman perperkto mga referee dun,” he added. “Eh talagang ganun eh, you just have to give that to them na talagang nagkakamali talaga.
“Pero sayang, kasi pwedeng tumuloy yung momentum namin eh, ‘di ba?”
The Elite are now down to 6-3 after the loss to the Aces. So for Ramos, he hopes that his bench will be there to show up when they aim to get back on track versus the also-ran Columbian Dyip next on Saturday in Biñan, Laguna.
“We just have to bounce back against Dyip on Saturday. Yun na lang sinabi ko sa kanila,” he said. “Pero kinuha ko yung attention ng second group, ng bench, na if I call your name or your numbers you have to be ready all the time.
“Hindi pwedeng yung core lang ng team yung naglalaro sa loob, napapagod din yan. Hopefully against Dyip, kuhain namin yun. Magtrabaho muna kami sa Dyip and then yung last game (versus Phoenix Fuel Masters).”