UAAP Volleyball

One Big Finish: Roma Doromal cherishes remaining games as Ateneo exits Final Four race

JR Isaga

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One Big Finish: Roma Doromal cherishes remaining games as Ateneo exits Final Four race

ONE LAST FLIGHT. Ateneo libero Roma Mae Doromal (19) reacts in the UAAP Season 86 women's volleyball tournament

UAAP Season 86 Media Team

Losing her final chance to win her first UAAP women's volleyball title, Ateneo captain Roma Doromal sets her mind on enjoying her last two college games before signing off

MANILA, Philippines – For the second straight year, the Ateneo Blue Eagles have fallen out of the UAAP women’s volleyball Final Four after fourth-ranked FEU stunned top team UST to complete the semifinal cast last Saturday, April 13.

Booted out of contention in one fell swoop alongside Adamson and UE, Ateneo was reduced to playing a non-bearing game on Sunday, April 14, against the Lady Warriors.

The Blue Eagles, however, still fought with heart, dropping the Casiey Dongallo-led opposition in four sets, 25-17, 23-25, 25-23, 25-16, to raise their record to 4-8, and captain Roma Mae Doromal couldn’t be prouder of her teammates as her UAAP career winds down to its last two games.

“Of course, we’ve accepted [our fate],” she said in Filipino after tallying a stellar defensive line of 23 excellent digs and 23 excellent receptions.

“I just told my teammates to enjoy the ride and cherish the moments we have left. We just have to give our best for the Ateneo community.”

Still a part of NU high school during the Blue Eagles’ last championship win in Season 81, Doromal will end her collegiate career with just one Season 84 Final Four appearance, but she is nonetheless grateful for how her game has evolved under new head coach Sergio Veloso.

“I really learned to have a strong mind. I know what skills I already had, but now, under his system, I learned to have a strong mind,” Doromal continued. “Coach chose me to lead the team and I learned a lot from him.”

“He doesn’t care about what skills you have or don’t have. What’s important for him is for you to give your 100%, 110% best, whether in training or in games. That’s what I like about him. He’s not biased and checks who really contributes to the team, whether senior or rookie.”

Doromal may not have gotten a taste of Ateneo’s glory days, but she’ll exit the program with a head held high, knowing she embodied the fight and heart that every Blue Eagle had before her. –

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