ARQ Builders Lapu-Lapu felt like champions after its game against Tubigon Bohol in the 2021 Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas VisMin Super Cup, Friday evening.
As Manok ng Bayan of the Game Rendell Senining was being interviewed, everyone sneaked behind him before showering him with all of the water bottles and jugs that they have.
It was a surreal moment for the 25-year-old Senining, who just two weeks ago wanted to quit the game after allegations were hurled at him.
And he will forever be grateful to his teammates for helping build him back up.
“Alam mo when you go to a battle and the family has your back? I felt na grabe yung care nila sa akin. We may not be brothers but hindi naman kailangan by blood yung pagiging family e. They never left me out. Kahit naiiwan ako sa bubble nun while they are playing, they were still supporting me,” said Senining, who had a career-high 20 points on 8-of-14 shooting along with seven rebounds in the Heroes’ 101-67 win over the Mariners.
“I can say that I have a family in this team kahit saglit pa lang kami naglalaro together.”
The game against Tubigon was just his second game since being reinstated after a six-game suspension.
“Nung game namin sa Talisay, na observe ng coaches may jitters ako e. I wasn’t enjoying the game,” recalled Senining, who had just four points and four assists in 20 minutes of gametime.
“After the game, my coaches talked to me. Sabi nila, gusto nila may i-prove kagad ako, kung ano talaga ako. It’s not something na makukuha ko kagad. Nawala yung enjoyment ko.”
An added motivation coming into Friday’s game is that Rendell’s dad Raffy was celebrating his birthday.
It was no longer just proving himself to the public as he was now playing to make his dad proud.
“I was up to the challenge to prove myself because I know what I am capable of.
“So when Coach Francis [Auquico] told me to start, ready naman ako to give quality minutes. Kung ano yung binigay sa akin, I won’t waste it. Coach Francis also wanted me to prove myself,” he said.
Now, ARQ Lapu-Lapu heads into the playoffs not just with its complete roster but with high confidence.
On Saturday, the real battle begins as the Heroes take on the Mariners in a knockout match. If they survive, they move on to Sunday to face the winner of the Dumaguete-Tabogon tilt.
“God really works in mysterious ways. I think this win was a much-needed boost for us heading into the playoffs.”