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Camaraderie leads to championship for UP Lady Maroons

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The UP Lady Maroons swept the Ateneo Lady Eagles during their Finals series encounter in the UAAP Season 78 Women’s Badminton Tournament. It is the second consecutive championship for the Lady Maroons, as they also beat the Lady Eagles in Season 77.

Along with winning the championship, the Lady Maroons extended their undefeated streak to eighteen straight ties across UAAP Seasons 77 and 78.

For Season 78 Rookie of the Year awardee Lea Inlayo, a championship win in her debut campaign as a Lady Maroon made all the hard work and sacrifices worth it. Inlayo shared that the team captains had motivated the whole squad. She also emphasized the camaraderie they had as a team. “Isa lang masasabi ko, talagang solid. As in buo kami hindi lang sa Badminton kundi magkakaibigan din kami tsaka sobrang close namin. “

Likewise, co-captain Elisha Ongcuangco felt that the unity of the team, which was personified not only on the court but also in their motivating each other in play and academic obligations, was key to their championship defense. “Sobrang nakakatulong talaga yung pagkakaisa hindi lang kami teammates kundi sobrang close talaga namin lahat. Like sisters”, reiterated Ongcuangco.

UP’s other captain Bea Bernardo stated how proud and happy she was for her team. Bernardo explained that she and her teammates bonded with one another before and after each training session. She narrated, “Naging one team talaga kami which is yung goal talaga para maging transparent kaming lahat. Talagang love namin ang isa’t-isa.”

Philippine Sports News - Tiebreaker Times Camaraderie leads to championship for UP Lady Maroons

That team spirit of the Lady Maroons extended to gratitude for the people who have been with them throughout the whole campaign. Bernardo said, “Ang masasabi ko lang talaga super thank you sa lahat na nag support sa amin. Sa Pep, sa mga parents, siyempre sa mga teammates ko, sa team managers, basta sa lahat. Thank you talaga sa walang sawang suporta sa amin and sa pagtitiwala sa amin.”

With Season 79 roughly ten months away, the Lady Maroons are planning to rest first after a grueling season. Bernardo professed “Sa ngayon siguro mag-relax muna. Sa wakas natapos na rin so kami ngayon parang happy happy muna. Kasi parang yun nga the whole season parang pinatay namin ang lahat, as in walang happy-happy. Puro training at aral dahil siyempre UP ka. Kaya ngayon happy happy lang kami.”

In the past, UP won six successive UAAP Women’s Badminton championships from Seasons 58-63. While chances of repeating the feat at this stage are still slim, the Lady Maroons have already set their sights on extending the current run to a three-peat next season. Bernardo promised, “We could try. Basta gagawin pa rin yung best every game. Yun lang.”

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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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