The heart and soul of Cignal
From being with the Philippine Army Lady Troopers in the V-League to the Cignal HD Spikers in the Superliga, the two have been the consistent one-two punch of the teams they have played in.
Fast forward to 2019, the two are back in the biggest of stages.
The hard-hitting duo of Cignal orchestrated a comeback for the ages in Game One of the semifinals that dashed the twice-to-beat incentive of Petron last Tuesday. Two days later, Daquis and Gonzaga book-ended the all-important Game Two that unseated the defending champions in another epic five-setter.
“Una pa lang, noong pumasok kami sa Cignal, prinomise talaga namin sa isa’t isa na talagang gusto namin mapag-champion ‘yung Cignal,” said Daquis, who signed with Cignal in 2017.
Having returned a couple of months ago from an ACL injury that sidelined her for two years, an emotional Gonzaga then chimed in, saying:
“Nagpromise ako talaga kay Ate Rachel.
“‘Day, matagal man ang pagbabalik ko, promise ko I will give my very best para matulungan ‘yung team na makaabot tayo sa Finals,” the lefty gunner out of Central Philippine University confided.
Daquis and Gonzaga make up one of the most well-rounded tandems the nation has ever seen.
With their potent scoring abilities to go along with a hard-nosed approach on defensive coverage, they willed Cignal to a date with destiny.
But besides their two-way arsenals, it is the intangibles that make the duo irreplaceable.
On one hand, Cignal has a leader in Daquis whose principle has always been to lead by example. The product of Far Eastern University embodies fortitude as she steadies the ship whenever the opposition dares to capsize her team’s cruise.
On the other hand, Gonzaga is a loyal soldier whose sheer presence on the court provides inspiration for the rest of her teammates. With her unwavering spirit, Cignal always has a trooper who is more than willing to carry the cudgels even in the most pressure-laden moments.
While the rest of the HD Spikers draw strength and motivation from the pair of stalwarts, Daquis and Gonzaga said that they have been relying on each other to keep their spirits on a high.
“Sa isa’t isa doon kami humuhugot ng lakas,” Daquis, a native of Taytay, Rizal, shared. “Once na nakita mo ‘yung isa na talagang nagtatrabaho, hindi pwedeng hindi ko siya susundan kasi alam kong pagsinundan ko siya mas makakatulong sa team.”
“Siguro nagco-connect na ‘yung puso namin,” Gonzaga smilingly added.
“Kung nakita ko na nagbubuwis buhay na si ate Rachel, I have to do my thing, kailangan ko siya tulungan.”
Sharing the same court once again is already an experience far greater than any championship moment for Daquis and Gonzaga. But the long-time partners will not settle for less.
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