CEBU

Senining eager for PBA D-League debut

FAMILIARITY. Marinerong Pilipino head coach Yong Garcia explained that his familiarity with players like Darrell Menina was what led him to select several Cesafi standouts in the PBA D-League Draft. (Contributed photo)

AFTER spending many years out of the spotlight, former Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. high school star Rendell Senining finally gets his opportunity to play under the bright lights on the big stage after he got selected by Marinerong Pilipino in the 2020 PBA D-League Draft.

Picked second in the 10th round where he will be competing for minutes in a loaded backcourt that also has fellow Cebuano standouts Darrell Shane Menina and Miguel Gastador, Senining expressed his gratitude to be given this opportunity.

“It’s miraculous and very unexpected. This is a great opportunity given by God and I’m very thankful and I feel blessed. I won’t waste this one because a lot of players dream to reach this stage,” said Senining, who is currently playing for Far Eastern University.

It has been a long and arduous road for the cagey 5-foot-10 guard to get to this point. After starring for Sacred Heart School-Ateneo de Cebu in their title run back in 2012, Senining suited up for the University of San Jose-Recoletos Jaguars’ college team before getting recruited to join the National University.

After spending a few years playing for NU’s Team B, he transferred to FEU in 2016. After all that time, Senining says he is excited to finally be able to show people what he can do.

“I’m very eager to show the people what I can do. The past years, I’ve been working in the shadows just waiting for the right time. Honestly, there are so many setbacks that I’ve been through that made me think of quitting but this is my dream and I’d die for this. I really mean that. I just want to prove the doubters wrong and show them what I’m capable of,” shared Senining.

Keenly aware of the firepower that Marinerong Pilipino already has, which includes reigning PBA D-League MVP Eloy Poligrates, Senining says he will remain ready if called upon.

“I’ve been working countless hours and always staying ready for this kind of opportunity and I’m very confident on what I bring to the table. Especially sa mga intangible stuff that the team needs. I’m willing to do most little things that will have an impact on the team, especially on defense. I also want to pay back the team that put their trust in me,” Senining said.

Meanwhile, coach Yong Garcia explained that his familiarity with the Cesafi stars led him to pick Menina, Gastador and Senining in the 2020 PBA D-League Draft.

The Skippers are trying to build on their runner-up finish in last season’s D-League where they lost to BRT-Sumisip-St. Clare in the finals. Garcia says the presence of the young guys will also help spur the veterans as they try to keep up with the fast-paced game of the school-based squads that they will be going up against.

Of the 12 participating teams, Marinerong Pilipino will be the only club-based team.

“Malaking tulong sa mga beterano ng Marinerong Pilipino ang mga young guys para makasabay kami sa running game ng mga school-based team,” said Garcia.

“I saw Menina play for Mapua before and the coaching staff also saw that he can contribute to the team,” said Garcia of Menina, the former University of Cebu point guard who was named to the Cesafi Mythical Five squad this past season.

As for Gastador, Garcia said, “We were looking for a slasher and stopper. That’s why we drafted Gastador.”

And finally, Garcia explained that the team’s need for a “natural point and a pesky defender,” was what led them to select Senining in the later rounds.

However, it remains to be seen if reigning PBA D-League MVP Eloy Poligrates will be back with the team as Garcia disclosed that management has yet to decide on his status after hearing of the incident that he got himself in last week. (JNP)


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