On anniversary of infamous brawl, EAC players involved in melee with Perpetual Help's Cabiltes

By Ivan Saldajeno

SAN JUAN, MM--Exactly one year after some EAC Generals got involved in what could boil down as the worst NCAA brawl since the violence-marred 1970's, they found themselves in another free-for-all.

Some of EAC and Perpetual Help players got into a toss-up outside the FilOil Flying V Arena right after their NCAA game on Tuesday won by the latter.

It stemmed from a late fourth quarter moment when Alta Niko Cabiltes and General Rico Diego got into a shoving match, leading to their ejections.

Fau Pascua, who appeared to be playing the peacemaker in the confrontation, was also shown the showers in the event.

But it did not end from there as witnesses claimed Cabiltes and Pascua exchanged punches at the parking lot while a third player, Pascua's teammate Sidney Onwubere, also got involved in the fracas.

According to Perpetual Help's GJ Ylagan, one of the cooler heads who stopped the brawl, "Binalikan kami nung EAC. Inaawat na nga namin [pero] ayaw paawat. Umikot sa likod [si] Pascua. Sinapak si Cabiltes. Tapos ayun, nagkagulo na."

The witnesses also said that Ylagan's teammate Bright Akhuetie and Pascua's ally Hamadou Laminou also played peacemakers in the off-court clash.

However, Pascua countered the claims and said that the Perpetual Help players sparked the outdoor commotion.

Pascua narrated, "Palabas palang kami ng Arena, sa may pinto palang po, kita na namin sila inaabangan kami. Siyempre po di namin pinansin baka may inaantay silang teammate. Diretso lang po kami tapos nakayuko lang kami ni Onwubere. Ang dami na po nilang sinabi na mayabang daw kami tsaka ano daw ba problema namin."

The point guard, one of the players who got suspended in last year's brawl between the Generals and the Mapua Cardinals, added, "We’ve learned our lessons na po [from] last year."

As of posting, NCAA Commissioner Bai Cristobal is investigating the said matter and will release a verdict anytime soon.

Follow this writer on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno