Cignal head coach Dexter Clamor felt odd when the HD Spikers opened their Final Four campaign against the Perpetual Altas, last Sunday.
After all, for the first time in his very young coaching career, the rookie tactician was up against his former mentor Sammy Acaylar.
“Siya ‘yung mentor ko talaga. Siya ‘yung nagturo sa akin ng volleyball.
“Inencourage niya ako sa coaching since may potential daw ako sa coaching,” said Clamor, after Cignal’s Game Two victory against Perpetual last Tuesday.
Clamor played under Acaylar for four years in Perpetual. The two then went on to win two championships together for the Las Piñas-based school.
The pride of Mariveles, Bataan blossomed under Acaylar’s tutelage. He won a pair of Best Setter awards, while also bagging the Most Valuable Player plum in Season 86.
After seeing his protege’s potential, Acaylar then urged a young Clamor to pursue coaching.
The rest was history. Clamor clinched his first championship in only his first try, claiming the Reinforced Conference title last July.
Now in his second tournament, the 28-year-old mentor is once again in the Finals, gunning for the HD Spikers’ double gold bid. And he’s got no one to thank other than his former mentor.
“I will give all the credit sa kanya.
“Without him, wala ako sa posisyon ko ngayon. As I said, without him, hindi ko siguro ma-aachive lahat ng meron ako ngayon sa coaching, sa playing, sa coaching, kasi sa kanya talaga ako natuto,” said Clamor.
Witnessing Clamor’s growth from player to coach, Acaylar is immensely proud of his former understudy’s achievements.
“I’m happy kasi siyempre mentor niya ako, galing sa ‘kin ‘yan. Naging best setter sa akin ‘yan sa NCAA,” said decorated head coach.
“Masaya ako para sa kanya, proud ako sa kanya. And sumusunod naman siya sa mga pangaral ko once na humihingi siya sa akin ng tulong.”
Despite what he’s gained during the course of his young career, Clamor believes that he owes everything to Acaylar. And his success is nothing but a testament to Acaylar’s well-built program.