Jarencio, NorthPort shoot for best all-Filipino start
ANTIPOLO—Understandably, Pido Jarencio likes what’s happening with NorthPort.
But it’s not entirely because his Batang Pier have a 2-0 start in the PBA Philippine Cup.
“Everyone has been stepping up that I don’t need to play Stanley (Pringle) to the ground to get wins,” Jarencio said as his Batang Pier try to extend their franchise-best start in the season’s most prestigious conference on Friday at Ynares Center here.
“Now, he doesn’t have to score a ton of points for us to win.”
Pringle, the PBA Press Corps’ scoring champion last season, scored only 11 points in an authoritative win over NLEX on Sunday as the people Jarencio enlisted to be the team’s other gunners have stepped up.
And he speaks highly of Robert Bolick, NorthPort’s first round choice—and third overall—in the last Draft, who has been delivering and has given the Batang Pier one of the most fearsome backcourts this early in the tournament.
“You see how he plays, there are no wasted movements. His basketball IQ is off the charts and that’s what I love about him,” Jarencio explained. “Plus the fact that he is willing to be coached makes him even more special.”
Special is what everyone can call NorthPort’s start here, as it owns victories over Blackwater and the Road Warriors and is tipped to make it three straight in its 4:30 p.m. clash with the Dyip.
Against Columbian, Jarencio said that they were wary of the all-around contributions the Dyip’s own super rookie, CJ Perez, can come up with.
“We have something devised for him [defensively],” he said. “But it will be total team effort for us. We are not about being a one-man team.”
Columbian has a 1-1 card, with its victory coming at the expense of four-time defending champion San Miguel Beer. And that, Jarencio said, makes the Dyip a dangerous enemy.
“If we can just get our big men to be more aggressive [offensively], then this will truly be a promising conference for us,” Jarencio said, sounding off the call to Mo Tautuaa to assert himself more.
“Mo is Mo,” Jarencio said. “And I have been asking him to be more aggressive. It’s different if you have a dominant big man in this league.”
Meanwhile, the Beermen shoot for a second straight victory when they tangle with Meralco in the 7 p.m. main game.
San Miguel bounced back from that upset loss with a 99-91 thumping of Barangay Ginebra also Sunday when, according to coach Leo Austria, his charges played with pride more than anything else.
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