A day before the year’s most anticipated volleyball match, the Ateneo Lady Eagles had to face a winless UE squad. The Lady Eagles came out on top, winning in three sets, 25-7, 25-17, 25-8. Team captain Alyssa Valdez was available to the media after the game to answer some questions.
Ateneo played excellent in the first and third sets, allowing UE to score less than 10 points in each set. UE gave Ateneo some trouble during the second set, however, and Alyssa claimed that the team got complacent during that time.
“Sa second set, siyempre hindi maiiwasan… Naging complacent siguro, kahit hindi namin napapansin. Pero it shows sa ginalaw namin sa second set.”
With their perfect start so far in the season, Alyssa was asked if the team still had any room for improvement. She cited their recent match against UP which brought to light some areas that the team had to look into.
“Siyempre after the game nung Sunday, we really thought that we have to improve a lot of things para sa upcoming games namin. So nagstart na si Coach Tai. We’re really thankful na lumabas yung trinaining namin sa game.”
“Basically we have to be consistent in every aspect. Yung basic kailangan talaga consistent kami. At the end of the day dun kami babalik kung walang nang receive. Siguro yung teamwork din namin. Yung pag gel namin as a team. Kailangan talaga mas maging fluid kami. Kasi last year we played na together, may na-add pa, sila Bea, Maggie, Therese. So we really have to work hard para maging fluid kami as a team.”
“We’re preparing naman. One game at a time. Medyo ngayon two games in a weekend. So medyo kakaiba rin. Hopefully maganda yung advantage na nakuha namin. We’re really praying kasi hindi talaga hawak namin. I can say that we’re really working hard. During training we doing what we’re supposed to do.”
She was also asked if they were going to have practice in preparation for the game the tomorrow. While she said that the team would like to rest, they would not mind if coach required them to train for their next game.
“We don’t know pa. Sana good mood siya. We’re praying talaga, we’re hoping that we could rest. Pero if magttraining kami why not, it’s for us naman, it’s for tomorrow’s game din. It’s up to him din talaga.”
She also had kind words to say about her former coach, Francis Vicente, who is now at the helm of the UE women’s volleyball team.
“I’m really proud for Sir Vince. Coach ko siya nung high school. Siya daddy ko talaga nung high school. Sobrang malaki talaga ng pasasalamat ko sa kanila kasi pinagtiyagaan nila ako. Kung hindi dahil sa kanila, sa mga coaches ko before, wala rin naman ako dito.”
“Madaming kailangan i-change si coach. He’s coming from UST, NU, now UE. Siyempre iba-iba yung culture ng bawa’t school. Mag-aadjust sila, sana they meet halfway para maging maganda yung outcome ng games nila.”
Alyssa was asked what she thinks about the Ateneo-La Salle rivalry, and if the matchup changes their preparation for the game.
“Yung maganda kay Coach Tai, pinapafeel niya na every game is important. Every game we have to prepare, we have to do our best, we have to improve pa. Siyempre tinitignan yung galaw nila, not the name of the school.”
While she doesn’t think much of the rivalry, Alyssa said that it is good for the sport, as it helps promote the sport that she loves.
“It affects naman the volleyball community. Maganda yung result kasi madaming nanonood.”