Mark Barroca on Star freefall: 'Ayaw pa namin mag-bakasyon'
Mark Barroca and Star are hanging on for dear life in the Philippine Cup. Jerome Ascano

MARK Barroca has never missed the playoffs since he became a pro.

He’s not about to break that streak now.

The Star point guard, who’s in his fifth year in the PBA, remains optimistic the Hotshots will reach the postseason in this Philippine Cup despite a wobbly maiden campaign under coach Jason Webb.

“Syempre, confident pa rin kami,” Barroca said. “Ayaw namin mag-bakasyon ng maaga.”

The Hotshots lost to Barako Bull, 101-83, on Sunday after squandering a lead entering the fourth quarter that left a huge dent in their playoff hopes.

The Hotshots suffered their sixth setback in 10 games, and although they’re already assured of at least a playoff for the 10th and last spot, they still have to win their game against Blackwater to avoid complications.

“(We have to get in the) hard way nga lang,” Barroca said. “Marami kaming laro na ganito (na nasayang namin).”

[See Webb rues Barroca foul turned tide in Barako favor]

Don’t blame the 5-foot-10 playmaker, who has been bringing his A-game in the last two games, the latest on Sunday when he registered 17 points on 7-of-14 shooting, seven assists, four rebounds, and one block in 34 minutes.

Barroca, though, committed an unintentional landing-spot foul on Josh Urbiztondo late in the third quarter that resulted in a four-point play that seemed to shift the momentum  to the Energy's favor for good.

“(Pero) hindi lang dahil dun, kundi sa depensa rin namin. Ang dami nilang offensive rebound,” Barroca stressed as his team allowed the Energy to grab 47 rebounds — four more than the Hotshots’ output — including 16 on the offensive end.

Follow the writer on Twitter: @KarloSacamos