LOOKING to atone for the disappointing end to San Mig Coffee's repeat bid in the last PBA Commissioner’s Cup, point guard Mark Barroca has began conditioning training as he vowed to be even better for the season-ending Governors Cup.
The 5-foot-10 former Smart Gilas stalwart took a week-long break shortly after the Mixers were eliminated by the Alaska Aces in the semifinals, but has since started his own personal training by joining the Technological Institute of the Philippines men’s team in its daily practice.
“Nag-start na ako magpa-kundisyon kaya sumasama ako kay (TIP) coach Potit (de Vera) kasi takbuhan sa ensayo nila,” Barroca shared to Spin.ph.
Barroca admitted the memory of the stinging 3-1 setback at the hands of the Aces is still fresh in his mind, yet at the same time, it serves as an added motivation for him to improve his game and help the Mixers in their quest for another championship.
Since the Mixers dealt away point guards Josh Urbiztondo and Jonas Villanueva, coach Tim Cone has entrusted to Barroca the responsibility of running the show for the team - a task he takes as a big challenge.
“Gusto ko siyempre maging consistent sa pagdala sa team, lalo na sa decision-making saka maging good example ako sa kanila. Parang maging extension ako ni coach (Tim Cone) sa loob ng court,” added Barroca, who now shares the San Mig backcourt chores with rookie Fil-Am Alex Mallari.
Barroca has actually raised his game several notches during the late stretches of the Commissioner’s Cup eliminations and in the playoffs against Meralco and Alaska, respectively.
The former Far Eastern University playmaker hit 33.8 percent from three-point region last conference, a decent improvement to his 27.7 percent shooting during his rookie year.
Barroca also averaged 8.5 points, 3.6 rebounds, 3.7 assists and 1.8 assists in 30.9 minutes during the import-laden tournament, a stark improvement to his 5.3 points, 2.3 rebounds and 1.1 assists per game during his rookie year.
“Sana maging healthy ako lagi kasi gusto ko makapag-champion pa with the team. Kaya nagpapa-kundisyon na ako ngayon pa lang,” added Barroca, who turned 27 last month.