Down at the half, Mark Barroca went berserk by draining 4 triples in the 3rd quarter to bring Star back into contention in the Manila Clasico battle Sunday night.
But all of that went down the drain as the Hotshots lost steam in the dying seconds of their match against Barangay Ginebra in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
As Star absorbed its 4th loss in 5 games, Barroca cited miscommunication inside the court led them to their downfall versus the Gin Kings.
“Yung mga ganoong bagay dapat yung mapansin namin kasi di na kami nagkakaintindihan pag may crowd, di na kami nakakapag-usap sa mga ganoong game. Nagstruggle kami kasi di na kami nakascore,” said Barroca, who topscored led the Hotshots points.
Barroca’s 3-point barrage enabled Star to gain an 8-point lead heading into the payoff period, but the momentum completely flipped in the last quarter as they struggled to buy a basket.
In front of more than 16,000 screaming fans, Barroca admitted his team failed to set up plays down the stretch after Ginebra made a mini run to take the driver seat.
“Di na kami nakapag-usap sa loob kasi maingay na. Next game siguro pag nakarun ang kalaban, para alam namin kung anong sitwasyon na gagawin namin,” he added.
True enough, Star lost its composure in the end game as the Hotshots only managed to produce 13 points, far from Ginebra’s output of 26 points in the pivotal 4th quarter.
“Nanghihinayang ako kasi di kami nanalo, nanduon yung team effort, yung heart namin na bumalik kasi down kamii noon kaso kinapos lang. Lumamang kami tapos nagrelax kami, so nawala yung depensa,” said Barroca, who was praised by his former mentor Tim Cone for making clutch shots.
With only a single win right now, Barroca knows they need to sweep the elimination round in order to make it to the playoffs
“Target namin hindi na siguro sa top 2, siguro hanggang playoffs muna kami, yun muna ang target namin so every game na lalaruin namin, bahala na kung anong mangyari, basta kami win talaga.” — By Jason Mercene