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Coach Mayi on representing the country and Mane ‘n Tail’s surprising performance

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After a few disappointing performances in the first round of the PSL even Mane ‘n Tail Head Coach, Rosemarie Prochina admitted that their five-set near victory against league-leading Petron came as a surprise.

Saying that her team didn’t have as much practice time as she would have preferred, Coach Mayi banked on her pre-game pep talk and breathing exercises to give her team a boost. “Meron pala kayo niyan!,” Prochina says she told her team right after the game. “Ngayon ko lang naman sila nakasama kaya natuwa ako na napalabas ko rin yan. Napa-wow ako sa kanila. Kahit talo, at least nasatisfy sila sa sarili nila.”

Mane ‘n Tail showed unrelenting defensive pace, sticking blockers on Petron’s best attackers whose attacks were funneled to Mane ‘n Tail’s waiting back row players. The Lady Stallions wound up rebounding more than 50% of Petron’s attacks while scoring 10 points on block kills alone. Petron was also forced into 32 errors that resulted from them overcompensating to map out Mane ‘n Tail’s defense. Though Petron’s high octane offense still got the best of them in the end, Prochina is optimistic about her team’s chances in the second round. “Kung kaya ipanalo lahat, why not ‘di ba? Ramdam ko naman ‘yung pagbago ng mentality ng mga players ko, ‘di na sila mabilis ma-down. Kailangan lang lagi kaming palaban.”

When asked to comment on the current state of local volleyball, Prochina exclaims that she would always play for the country when given the chance. “Play for the country, play for the flag. Tanggalin ‘yung mga galit, set aside ‘yung mga differences para bumalik tayo sa limelight ng volleyball. ‘Di tayo malayo sa volleyball lalo na dito sa Southeast Asia. Wala talagang mangyayari kung sa mga players pa lang may pataasan na ng pride. Sana ‘yung pride nasa paglaro para sa bansa.”

Prochina told the Tiebreaker Times of her early struggles with the National Team that eventually resulted in a Gold Medal in the ’93 SEA Games with then Coach and current PSL President, Ramon “Tats” Suzara. “Hindi ako starting six noon nung una. Ako siguro ‘yung last sa lineup, ‘yung huling nilagay. Dinaan ko lang talaga sa sipag. ‘Di ako mataas tumalon noon, pero gusto ko lang talaga manalo. Hinayaan kong dalhin ako ng passion ko,” Prochina closed.

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Miguel Luis Flores fell face first into sports writing in high sch9l and has never gotten up. He reluctantly stumbled into the volleyball beat when he started with Tiebreaker Times three years ago. Now, he has waded through everything volleyball - from its icky politics to the post-modern art that is Jia Morado's setting.

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