Hours before the Colegio de San Juan de Letran Knights took on the Arellano Chiefs on Tuesday afternoon, Letran head coach Jeff Napa was already irked. He had read online that San Sebastian Golden Stags head coach Egay Macaraya had claimed Napa knowingly held back information on their players, keeping it from San Sebastian until it was already too late.
And it all stems from the ongoing investigation over Letran’s Koy Galvelo and San Sebastian’s RK Ilagan, both of whom allegedly played in a “ligang labas” game.
“Nalaman namin after that fifth game nung nagsalita na ‘yung Letran. What I was very frustrated is alam na ni Jeff Napa, alam na ni coach Jeff na meron palang ganung nangyari, ‘di man lang niya nasabi sa amin or ano kasi ‘di naman nila ginagamit si [Koy] Galvelo and that’s what hurt us,” Macaraya rued after San Sebastian’s 94-70 win over Mapua.
“If we know na ‘di pala pwede, why not give RK ano.”
Prior to the opening ceremony of the season, Napa had already known that Galvelo had played in a game without the school’s knowledge last June 29 – a day after the NCAA’s eligibility meeting.
Knowing the repercussions, Napa opted not to field Galvelo in any of the games. Ilagan, on the other hand, played in San Sebastian’s first five games in the NCAA Season 94 Seniors Basketball Tournament.
For his part, Napa could not help but smirk at Macaraya’s comments, saying that he works only for Letran.
“I think it’s not my responsibility to answer that kung ano man ‘yung sinabi ng kabila kasi ang responsibilidad ko ay Letran. Wala akong pakialam sa kung sino mang school ‘yan,” a visibly irate Napa pointed out after Letran’s 88-70 win over Arellano.
“Ang responsibility ko ‘yung 15 players na susunod at susunod sa patakaran namin. Kung meron mang lumabag kung sino man ‘yun, wala akong pakielam dun.”
Allegedly, Galvelo and Ilagan were teammates during that game held in Tandang Sora, Quezon City. Napa said that he had not known that Ilagan was involved as well.
If proven true, San Sebastian could face forfeitures of their wins over CSB and JRU.
“Nalaman ko lang naman yun [RK Ilagan] nung tinanong ni Father Vic [Calvo] e. Ba’t nila ako tuturo? Kasalanan nila yun. Ako responsibilidad ko yung kinseng players ko, may Team V pa ako. Alangan namang intindihin ko pa yan. Sinasabi ko lang ang katotohanan,” added Napa.
“Ganun lang kasimple yan.”
According to multiple sources closely monitoring the situation, Letran will not be slapped with any sanctions as Galvelo had yet to play a single NCAA game.
Napa was quick to add that Galvelo, a transferee from St. Clare College, is supposed to be an important part of his rotation.
“Tinanong ako ni Fr. Vic [kung bakit ko siya ‘di pinapasok], may kasalanan ‘yan kaya ‘di ko pinapasok. Koy Galvelo is a big factor to our team. Hindi siya bangko. Very important person si Koy. Pero I have to sacrifice dahil sa rule na nilabag niya,” lamented Napa.
“Kung meron mang nadamay diyan, di ko na kasalanan yun. Kasalanan ng kung sino mang pontio pilato ang pinalaro yun. Ganun lang kasimple yun. Wag tayo mag point fingers ng mag point fingers kung kanino. We’ll take action sa kung ano man ang ginagawa natin. Ngayon, I took my action kung ano ginawa ko kay Galvelo kasi player ko siya.”
Napa fired back at Macaraya’s comments, opining that it is his responsibility to know what his players have been doing.
“‘Yung mga teammates pa niya ang nagsabi sa akin eh. Bakit ko ituturo ‘yun kung alam ko? Sisihin niyo ‘yung mga players ko rin ganun lang kasimple yun. Sisihin niya ‘yung buong Letran. Pero kung ano ‘yung action ko, ganun parin ‘yun. Responsibility pa rin ng players ko yan kung anong gagawin ko. Kasalanan niya rin ‘yun.
“I only care about my team. Ever since. Kahit naglalaro ako, kahit andun ako sa NU. Ganun kasimple yun. Kung may ginawang kalokohan yung ibang skwelahan, wala akong pakielam, kasalanan nila ‘yun,” he added.
“Gagawa sila ng kalokohan tapos ako masisisi niyo mali naman ata ‘yun. Siguro naman tapos na ‘yang issue na ‘yan. Stop blaming each other. ‘Di naman ako nag-point ng finger. Full responsibility ko. Hindi ko nga sinabi kay Fr. Vic eh na may ginawang kasalanan player ko. ‘Cause it’s my call. Team ko ‘to,” he concluded.
“Ganun ka-simple yan.”