After a fifth-place finish in the 2021 Premier Volleyball League Open Conference, Sta. Lucia has decided to bring in a new face to take over the team.
The Lady Realtors have named decorated head coach Edgar Barroga as the head coach moving forward.
Barroga replaced Eddieson Orcullo, who was the team’s head coach from 2020 up until the PVL bubble.
For Barroga, the offer of the Sta. Lucia post was an opportunity he could not take for granted, especially after the quick formation and disbandment of UAC.
“First of all, medyo overwhelmed ako. Unang-una kasi hindi ko ine-expect na matawagan ako at i-offer sa akin ‘yung position,” Barroga told Tiebreaker Times. “Siyempre, sino naman ang tatanggi? Sa akin, diyan kasi maganda ‘yung company at may potential ‘yung players. Hindi na ako nagdalawang isip at excited na ako.
“So, naging positive kagad ako mag-isip at nagplano kagad ako. Nagpasalamat din ako kay Lord kasi hindi natin ine-expect kasi ‘yung UAC kasi nawala na,” he continued.
“Ito ‘yung way ni Lord na maging mas maganda ‘yung situation ko after Cignal.”
Barroga, who is also the chief tactician of National University’s boys’ volleyball program, was the head coach of Cignal from 2018-20. He guided the HD Spikers to a magical run in the 2019 PSL All-Filipino Conference.
Barroga was then let go by the team early this year, and was replaced by Shaq delos Santos.
He was offered the post to be the head coach of UAC, but the club ended up not playing in the Open Conference.
Sta. Lucia, on the other hand, was just one game from making it to the Open Conference semis. That is why Lady Realtors head coach Buddy Encarnado gave Barroga one marching order.
“‘Yung unang ginagawa ko is ‘yung mga nakikita kong weaknesses ng mga players na i-dedevelop ka’gad natin. Kaya kumuha ako ng coaching staff na talagang mag-train ng maayos na players,” he said.
“Nakita ko ‘yung potential nila. Ang target namin kagad is top four. Pagdating sa top four, dun tayo ulit mangangarap. I’m confident enough, lalo na dahil sa suporta ng management. Nakita ko rin ‘yung eagerness nila kung paano nila kami suportahan,” he continued.
“So palagay ko, wala kaming reason na hindi makapasok sa Final Four.”
Meanwhile, Encarnado disclosed that Sta. Lucia will still honor the contract it has with Orcullo that ends this year.
“We parted in good ways,” said the veteran sports official.