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Grieving MJ Perez shows ultimate display of professionalism



Photo by Noel Tonido

“Kung ibang tao ‘yun… I can’t even imagine. I don’t want to imagine. Magbe-breakdown ka talaga ‘nun,” confessed F2 Logistics’ Cha Cruz.

Cruz, the team captain of the F2 Logistics, was the only Cargo Mover to find out that Maria Jose Perez, their high-scoring import, had just lost her brother, Daniel, to cancer a day before Game Three of the Chooks-to-Go/PSL Grand Prix Finals.

The Venezuelan did not want any of her teammates to know. She definitely did not let grief way her down, still managing to lead F2 Logistics to the 2017 Chooks-to-Go PSL Grand Prix championship over the Petron Blaze Spikers. The 2008 Beijing Olympian powered in 24 points in the deciding Game Three.

Each and every point, every swing she dedicated to her brother.

“It was really hard for me, but I wanted to play for my team,” Perez, who was fighting off tears, told Tiebreaker Times.

“I wanted to play for my teammates and I also know that my brother would have wanted me to play, as well.”

F2 Logistics head coach Ramil De Jesus gushed about Perez’s fortitude.

“Sobrang hirap noon. Napaka-professional niya. Saludo ako sa kanya,” said the decorated mentor.

“Kakaibang lungkot ‘yun. Sobrang bigat noon, pero di mo makikita sa kung paano siya naglaro kanina.”

Instead of celebrating, the 2017 PSL Grand Prix Most Valuable Player’s mind eventually went to her family. She plans to fly back to Utah and meet her family before going to Venezuela.


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.