It was only 10 seasons ago that Rey Karl Dimaculangan orchestrated the devastating University of Santo Tomas Tiger Spikers offense, en route to numerous titles.
Now, the former MVP setter is guiding the University of the East Lady Warriors in their mission out of the UAAP Season 81 Women’s Volleyball cellar.
At 30 years old, Dimaculangan is easily the youngest head coach in the tournament. His youth showed in UE’s first outing, a five-set loss to University of the Philippines Lady Maroons. Dimaculangan was more vocal in the Lady Warriors second outing – after all, he needed to light a fire under his dazed team.
UE went in favored against the undermanned National University, but had no answers for the Lady Bulldogs youth movement come game time.
“Noong first game, doon siguron doon ‘yung pressure. Kinabahan din talaga ako noon. Itong second game, more confident na sana, kaso ‘di naglaro nang maayos ‘yung ibang players,” said Dimaculangan.
“Siguro may pagkukulang pa rin ako. Iisipin ko ulet kung paano ‘yung gagawin para tumaas ‘yung confidence nila, ‘yung morale.
“Ine-expect na rin namin, pero sinabi ko naman sa kanila na hindi basta-basta (mananalo). Sabihin natin na kakayanin pa rin natin, pero kailangan namin magtrabaho. Kapag ‘di ka nagtrabaho, matatalo talaga. Kulang na kulang pa,” he added.
Being a young coach has it trappings, as Dimaculangan is still figuring out how to most effectively communicate with the Lady Warriors.
“Nakakausap ko naman sila, napapagalitan, napagsabihan, but more on sa training. Pagdating sa labas, halos magkaka-barkada lang kami, magkakapatid,” shared the youthful mentor.
“Iba rin talaga ‘yung mga attitude ng mga player. Tinitignan ko pa kung paano sila pakisamahan para maka-deliver ko ng gusto kong sabihin.”
While Dimaculangan appreciates his players’ trust, he wants them to focus on getting wins more than anything.
“Siguro binabalik lang nila ‘yung tiwala ko sa kanila, pero mas importante talaga na makapanalo kami. Masasabi ko sa kanila na reward nila ‘yung panalo para sa lahat ng sakripisyo nila.”
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