PIDO Jarencio's voice reverberated inside the Moro Lorenzo gym, considered as 'enemy territory' for the former coach of the University of Santo Tomas Tigers who had battled Ateneo's Blue Eagles in several fierce battles in the UAAP during Jarencio's time.
Jarencio's mind, however, cannot be occupied by such thoughts on this day as he works to build the foundation and forge a new identity for GlobalPort, a talented team which has yet to advance past the quarterfinals in four conferences in the pro league.
The longtime UST coach said he is using the weeks leading up to his debut with GlobalPort in the PBA Commissioner's Cup to whip the Batang Pier into a playoff contender - a team which he envisions to be tough on the defensive end and plays with single-minded purpose.
Jarencio said the Batang Pier gave up one too many points during the last Philippine Cup, something which he said the team needs to be corrected if they are to be successful.
“Mataas ang binibigay nila na points sa kalaban, so we need more toughness and then, build tayo ng character para sa team na ito, so inaayos lang natin,” Jarencio shared to Spin.ph during the team’s Wednesday practice which ended just before a bomb threat forced Ateneo to order an evacuation of its campus.
The 49-year-old Jarencio, a known scorer and mean defensive player during his playing career, hopes he could mold Globalport into a tough team that won’t back down from any of the league’s powerhouse squads.
“Nagbi-build muna kami ng identity eh. Ini-introduce ko muna more on defense this week, tapos siguro next week, more on offense naman kasi medyo may problema sila sa defense the last two conferences.”
Jarencio, who owns a 75-64 win-loss record in his eight years as coach of University of Santo Tomas in the UAAP, said the entry of comebacking import Evan Brock could bring in a solid defensive presence in the middle for the Batang Pier.
“Malaking bagay siya (Brock) and since ang import conference, 40 percent sa import na kaagad, makakatulong agad siya,” explained Jarencio, who suited up for Magnolia/San Miguel Beer, Presto, Purefoods, Swift, Ginebra, and Tanduay in a 15-year pro career.
“Competitior `yung si Brock eh, kaya day in, day out nagpapa-kundisyon iyan. Masipag naman yung tao, iba work ethic kaya napili ko siya.”
The 6-foot-8 Brock played for Barako Bull in last season’s Commissioner’s Cup, before being replaced late in the tournament by former Los Angeles Lakers backup slotman DJ Mbenga.
The left-handed Brock gave a good account of himself as import of the Energy in in 11 games, averaging 21.1 points, 16 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 1.6 blocks in 40.8 minutes of play.
Globalport made it to the quarterfinals the last two conferences, but in both occasions, the young team owned by sportsman-businessman Mikee Romero, was eliminated early in the playoffs by Rain or Shine.