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    Surging Barako battles cellar-dwelling Ginebra

    Feb 26, 2013

    RAJKO Toroman is happy that everyone in the team is buying into his system, which is one of the biggest reasons why Barako Bull is enjoying a strong start.

    Now Barako Bull (3-1) has an opportunity continue the surge and seize solo second spot when it clashes with winless Barangay Ginebra San Miguel (0-4) in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup Wednesday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

    “The situation is much better because we have some more players to rotate. We believe that once this team steps in the court, because they believe in the system, we will be okay,” said Toroman, whose team eyes its fourth victory in five starts in their 7:30 p.m. game against the Gin Kings.

    What draws a smile on the face of the usually stoic Barako Bull consultant is the never-say-die spirit his boys have been displaying recently.

    Twice this conference, Barako Bull entered the fourth period trailing by 10 points.

    But led by import Evan Brock’s defensive hustle as well as timely baskets from Toroman’s key players Josh Urbiztondo, Mark Macapagal and Jonas Villanueva, the Energy Cola beat the Globalport Batang Pier in overtime, 98-88 on Feb. 10, followed by a 91-86 win against Air21 last week.

    “They make mistakes, of course because it’s not a process of one month, but when we want to fix everything, it’s about six months of preparation, but step by step, everything is falling into place,” added Toroman.

    In the eve of their game against the Energy Cola, Jayjay Helterbrand remains optimistic the Gin Kings could overcome their struggles this conference.

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    “We’re just in the same situation as before (referring to 2008 Fiesta Conference). Our morale is a little bit down. But our coaches told us to stay positive and continue to work hard,” Helterbrand told after the team’s practice at Xavier gym in San Juan.

    Even though the Gin Kings are coming off a 69-84 loss to unbeaten Alaska Aces, Helterbrand said he’s thankful that new coach Alfrancis Chua continues to encourage him to take those shots when the opportunity is there.

    “Coach told us that if we’re open, take the shot. You miss a hundred percent of the shot you don’t take as they say. Even us locals must knock down shots also, especially me. As a team we’re not shooting very well. Hope what we’re doing will click,” added the 36-year-old veteran point guard.

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