FEU Lady Tamaraws to celebrate win while watching fireworks
MANILA, Philippines – Head Coach George Pascua recalled that the last time the Far Eastern University (FEU) Lady Tamaraws watched the fireworks display of the Philippine International Pyromusical Competition in SM Mall of Asia, they were fresh from a loss to the University of Santo Tomas (UST) Tigresses.
But on Saturday, March 3, the FEU Lady Tamaraws unlocked 3 significant acheivements: winning against "rivals" UST, cutting their errors by half, and limiting Sisi Rondina to only 11 points.
"Manonood na kami ng fireworks nang masaya! (We're now going to watch the fireworks with joy!)" exclaimed Captain Bernadeth Pons.
"The last time nanood sila ng fireworks, talo sila sa UST (The last time they watched the fireworks, they lost to UST)," added Pons.
FEU and UST had a total of 15 UAAP finals appearances, with the Lady Tamaraws holding a 9-6 advantage.
In their first meeting this Season 80, the Lady Tamaraws extended their winning streak to 4 and swept the Tigresses in the match.
Pascua credited the team's performance to their chemistry and maturity when they did not look back after snapping their early two-game losing streak.
"'Yung maturity nila sa court, 'yung chemistry nila nandoon. 'Yung pinractice namin na score ganoon dapat. Na-apply namin sa game. 'Yung first 3 games, hindi pa ganoong katibay kapit nila," said Pascua.
(Their maturity in the court, their chemistry was there. What we practiced for the score, it had to be like that. We applied it in the game. The first 3 games, their hold wasn't that strong.)
Pascua and his squad were also overjoyed when they heard that they only committed a total of 17 errors, which was almost half of their usual number of errors.
"Achievement 'yan! Sabi ko nga nung nakaraan basta mabawasan lang 'yung errors namin, madali nang manalo. Noong mga nakaraan kasi, grabe 'yung error namin, hindi makatarungan – 43, 39," said Pascua.
(That's an achievement. I told them we should decrease our number of errors, so that it's easy to win. Because before, our errors were so many that it's not even acceptable – 43, 39.)
The Lady Tamaraws also managed to limit the league's topscorer Rondina to only 11 points. In Season 79, Rondina was the key factor to FEU's losses to UST in both elimination round games.
This time, FEU middle blocker Celine Domingo became the key to locking down Rondina as she topscored with 8 points off 3/6 of the team's blocks.
"Pinag-aralan namin 'yun. Sabi ko nga 70% (ng play) kay Sisi. But 'di natin pwedeng pabayaan sina Pacres saka 'yung core ng team nila kasi baka na-check natin ito, 'yung iba naman… so kailangan balansehin lang," said Pascua.
(We studied that. I said 70% of the play is Sisi's. But we cannot ignore Pacres and the core of the team because we might have checked this, but not the others... so we have to just balance it.)
As the Lady Tamaraws are now the second seed with a 5-2 record in the UAAP Season 80 Women's Volleyball tournament, the Morayta-based squad can celebrate, relax, and enjoy the fireworks display for now.
"Mahirap manood ng fireworks na naka-ganun ka lang. Lutang. At least ngayon ma-eenjoy nila. Thank God, kasi pinaghirapan nila 'yun," said Pascua.
(It's hard to watch the fireworks when you are dumbfounded. At least now, they can enjoy it. Thank God because they worked hard for it.) – Rappler.com