After two disappointing conferences the past season, is Globalport now a serious playoff threat?
If Batang Pier Coach Pido Jarencio is to be believed, he thinks Globalport is very much ready to compete against the league heavyweights with a revamped roster led by rookie Stanley Pringle.
“We’re ready. I think we have the materials to compete, especially here in the Philippine Cup. We have the tools to play against the top contenders,” said Jarencio yesterday when contacted by The Bulletin.
From last season’s rosters, Globalport only has five holdovers while seven are newcomers, including Pringle, the top rookie pick of Batang Pier in the previous PBA Rookie Draft.
Pringle, together with incoming sophomore guard Terence Romeo and veteran point guard Alex Cabagnot, are expected to play a major roles. Pringle has shown in tune-up games that he can be a potent player once the all-Filipino conference starts on Oct. 19.
The 6-foot-1 Pringle exploded for 24 points as Globalport handed Talk ’N Text an 88-78 beating in the PBA’s preseason tournament Liga ng Bayan held last Sunday at the Ibalong Centrum for Recreation in Legazpi City.
It was Globalport’s second win against perennial playoff contender Talk ’N Text, since Jarencio’s wards also triumphed last month in a tune-up encounter (106-76) at the Moro Lorenzo Gym in Katipunan, Quezon City.
The win improved Globalport’s record in preseason matches to 7-3, which included a 3-1 slate in Seoul, South Korea where it played against two college teams and two from the Korean Basketball League (KBL).
While the Batang Pier are making heads turn this preseason, Jarencio said he doesn’t want to put any pressure on the team, although he knows the players want to prove something this conference.
“Alam mo naman tayo, ayaw ko yung nagsasabi na ganito kami ngayon, na ito ang target namin. Basta kami one game at a time, we’ll give it our best in every game that we’ll play,” said Jarencio.
“Malaki naman ang tiwala ko sa mga players ko e. May gusto silang marating, of course maka-playoff ang gusto na mga yan. Tignan na lang natin. Basta itong team namin ngayon palaban yan.”