The RC Cola – Army Lady Troopers steamrolled through the first elimination phase of the Philippine Superliga Invitationals, not even dropping a set to any of their foes.
Leading the charge is four-year Lady Trooper and first time team captain, Jovelyn Gonzaga. The Ilongga has been her all-around brilliant self, strutting her form as the country’s best opposite hitter.
Gonzaga even capped her first three matches with a 14-point outburst against the upstart New San Jose Builders.
While the added responsibility of being a team captain wears down most players, Gonzaga has been incredibly comfortable in leading the Lady Troopers.
“Actually, hindi naman talaga mabigat. Kasi lahat naman talaga nagco-cooperate. Lahat naman may give-and-take relationship,” Gonzaga told Tiebreaker Times.
If anything, Gonzaga knows the best way she can lead her team is to maitain her high-level production.
“Sa loob ng court, alam kong kailangan kong magstep-up. I know naman na lahat kami kayang magstep up. In times siguro na kailangan ako, na kailangang bumuhay sa team. Kailangan kong gampanan ‘yun.”
The Lady Troopers have probably experienced all the trials and difficulties of competitive volleyball. Whatever situation they were in the first three matches, Army responded with the decisiveness of trained soldiers.
“We play steady – kung ano ‘yung ginagawa namin sa practice, ganoon din ‘yung nagagawa namin sa game. We play as a team talaga,” Gonzaga said. “Ang composure ng team ito, iba talaga. Like in times sa game na magcocommit kami ng error, makikita mo ‘yung focus ang composure nandoon talaga. Makikita mo talaga ‘yung sinasabi nilang veteran team kami,” she added.
With an unblemished 3-0 record, Army is on track to move on to the next phase of the tournament where the Top 3 teams facing Thailand’s Bangkok Glass.
“Sobrang importante sa amin na manalo every game, every tournament na salihan namin. Gusto talaga namin makapagdala ng pride and dignity sa Army.”
The Lady Troopers next see action on March 15 at the FilOil Fying V Centre where they face the Foton Toplander.