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Tiebreaker Times

Bowed, bent, but unbroken: Aby Marano lives to fight another day

Just a day after falling to second place in the Philippine Super Liga, Aby Marano, donning the colors of the Philippine Army Women’s Volleyball Team, succumbed to Alyssa Valdez and the PLDT Home Ultera Ultra Fast Hitters in Game Two of the Shakey’s V-League Reinforced Conference. 

The Philippine Army came so close to taking Game One of the Finals. They dug PLDT into a 0-2 set hole, but their lack of killer instinct allowed PLDT to steal the game away from them. Army’s big three of Jovelyn Gonzaga (19 points), Royse Tubino (16 points), and Marano (15 points), were not enough to stop Alyssa Valdez’s 25 and the rest of the Ultra Fast Hitters.

PLDT’s momentum carried over to the second game, overwhelming the Lady troopers in four sets to clinch coach Roger Gorayeb’s third V-League title in as many conferences. Marano gave her all in the match, scoring a team-high 14 points while notching 11 digs to round out her effort in the match. She tried to motivate her teammates to keep fighting, yelling in triumph after almost every point her team scored.

SVL-Reinforced-PLDT-vs.-Army-Marano-6497 Bowed, bent, but unbroken: Aby Marano lives to fight another day  - philippine sports news

But it wasn’t enough.

As the balloons fell from the rafters, celebrating the victory of the Ultra Fast Hitters, Marano once again found herself sobbing in the arms of her teammates. Her second time in as many days. She was left wondering if all her hard work, all her sacrifice, the time spent away from her family and friends, meant anything.

“Sobrang sakit lang kasi dalawang team ko na pinaghirapan ko every single training, na binuhos ang lahat ng pagod. Tapos ilang beses magpractice sa isang araw. Masakit lang (yung talo),” shared Marano.

Failure, futility, helplessness. These words flittered through Marano’s mind as her hopes of adding another championship to her name came crashing down.

“Sobrang na-overwhelm ako na ganyan yung nangyari sa dalawang team ko pa diba? (Umabot kami sa) Finals, tapos unbeaten sa elimination, pero come championship (natalo).”

The negative feelings lasted for just a second though, as the former Queen Archer quickly got over the loss, using it as fuel to train harder and become a better volleyball player.

“Iniisip ko lang na it wasn’t for us. God has another plan for us and for me. (We’ll use it) for us to try more and be a better athlete,” she said.

Already thinking of making up for the time spent away from her family due to the demands of her hectic volleyball schedule, Marano can’t wait for some family time.

“There’s more to life than volleyball naman diba? For the past months I’ve been sacrificing my time with my family. Siguro magbubuhos muna ako doon (sa kanila).”

At the end of the day, Marano took the loss in stride. She knew that she’d be back, better, stronger, because of these losses.

“I’ll take it as a challenge to better myself. Wala kang makukuhang lesson kung palagi kang panalo at panalo.” ended Marano.


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