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Asuncion-Robles optimistic for Ateneo in Semifinals round

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Last Wednesday proved to be a marker for the ADMU Badminton Team as they eliminated UP (Men’s) and FEU (Women’s) in their UAAP Season 78 playoff ties in the Rizal Memorial Badminton Hall. Finishing third in the Final Four this season made the path harder for Ateneo to reach the finals of the Men’s and Women’s Badminton tournaments due to NU and UP sweeping their respective elimination rounds.

The first order for the day for Ateneo Head Coach Kennie Asuncion-Robles was to guide her Men’s team in their tie against the UP Fighting Maroons. “Well actually we came in without expectations. Ibig sabihin alam namin UP is a tough team. We’re on guard. It can go either way so we’re very careful coming into each matches.”

The Ateneo Blue Eagles won the tie 3-2 in a pulsating contest. Despite losing the first singles match to UP, ADMU fought their way back winning the second singles and first doubles matches. UP then won the second doubles match only for rookie Hanz Bernardo to win the deciding fifth match against UP’s CK Clemente.

Asuncion-Robles only expressed elation for her boys after winning against a more experienced team. “I’m very happy and proud of the boys today. They’ve really played their heart out and parang they were set nga on their goal of winning today and I’m glad we pulled through.”

A few hours later, the Lady Eagles joined their male counterparts in the next round of the step-ladder with FEU getting knocked out this time.

The Lady Eagles won the tie 3-1 with FEU getting a consolation via the first doubles match which was won for them by Thea Pomar and Hannah Tudtud. Cassie Lim and Bianca Carlos led the Lady Eagles that day, with Asuncion-Robles only using four players in her team. Carlos won the first singles match while Lim made a comeback to win the second singles match. Both of them paired up together in the second doubles match to make ADMU advance to the next round. “Of course very happy because we know it’s a knockout and we know that danger. Very happy, very happy that the girls managed”, said Asuncion-Robles.

Archrivals DLSU await in the next round of both tournaments which will be played on Saturday, October 10, 2015 in the Rizal Memorial Badminton Hall. DLSU has a twice-to-beat advantage heading into both ties.

The veteran coach feels that her team has what it takes to eliminate DLSU, reiterating that one simple instruction of hers which she has stated all throughout the season. “As always naman, we do it one game at a time. Even to the players, my instructions are always that way. You focus on which game you’re supposed to play first. Most of them would play doubles events but whatever is in front of them is what they should concentrate on. I think La Salle has a very good team, both men and women. But we’ve already gauged them and we’ve kind of made plans already who more or less will be up first, the order of things. “

Overcoming that twice-to-beat advantage is a tough challenge in the UAAP. However, that won’t faze Asuncion-Robles and her teams. “Very, very excited because it’s an opportunity. I’ve always liked to look at things na it’s an opportunity. It’s an opportunity to get to another spot. We’re already third. It’s an opportunity for us to get up another spot.”

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Lorenzo's a frustrated author who knows a thing or two about Football and Basketball. Went all green from Ortigas to Taft. Supports Liverpool FC, FC Bayern Munich and the Alaska Aces

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