Eya Laure has been nothing but spectacular all season long, tallying career-highs after career-highs in the UAAP Season 84 women’s volleyball tournament.
But her presence is felt even deeper, even better than her scoring exploits. It’s her rallying voice that has been University of Santo Tomas rock during the games, especially when it’s going down-the-wire.
And it was on full display Thursday night when the Golden Tigresses defeated Ateneo de Manila University in a marathon four-setter, 25-19, 25-21, 29-31, 33-31, at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
Laure reset her career-high in points with 31 points on 30 attacks to go with 14 excellent receptions in the victory, but again, her impact went way more than that.
“Siyempre patatagan po talaga ng isip, ng dibdib,” said the 5-foot-10 open spiker.
“Sinabi ko na lang din habang nagha-huddle kami sa gitna na walang duwag na tigre so sumigaw ako noon.”
The Golden Tigresses were no stranger to grind-it-out battles, having experienced two five-setters, going the distance against De La Salle University and Adamson University.
“Kahit papaano nagreflect po yung mga five-setter namin na games sa game kanina,” the 23-year-old, second-generation Tiger continued.
Speaking about resetting her then-career-high 28 points which she made last May 10, Laure seemed unamused, knowing she committed a lot of errors.
But Laure then took a u-turn and thanked the UST coaches for sticking with her even with her errors.
“Ang dami ko pong error eh. Masaya lang po kasi sa dami ng error na binigay ko sa game na ito, nandiyan sila coach na hindi talaga ako binitawan,” said the reigning Best Outside Hitter.
“Minsan nagda-doubt ako sa sarili ko pero nandiyan si Coach Kungfu para ipaalala sa akin na bumawi agad, kalimutan na ‘yun, at magtiwala sa sarili.”
But the Golden Tigresses head coach Reyes will go through any storm with her top gun in Laure.
“‘Yung consecutive errors uncharacteristic kay Eya pero lumalabas din kung ano ‘yung natural niya na ilalaban niya puntos per puntos,” said the UST tactician.
“‘Yung adjustment na binigay namin sa kanya during training, pagdating sa dulo lumalabas ulit. ‘Yun ang pinakaimportante doon.”
Despite what seemed like a very tiring season with games scheduled every other game, Laure and her teammates will never get tired because of the massive 7th man that UST has.
“Paano ba naman kami mapapagod? Paano ba naman kami mapapagod kung ang dami naming naririnig na hiyawan na namiss namin for two years?”