Dindin Santiago-Manabat is confident that Akari can turn things around after suffering a straight-set beatdown at the hands of Choco Mucho to open their 2023 Premier Volleyball League All-Filipino Conference campaign on Saturday night.
The Chargers struggled in their first game, failing to convert attacks in the opener before eventually falling, 25-15, 25-20, 25-20, at the SMART Araneta Coliseum.
“Siguro ano nasa stage pa ako na nasho-shock pa,” said Santiago-Manabat, who finished with a game-high 17 points in the loss.
“Syempre parang sobrang iba yung pakiramdam kasi yun nga first game tapos natalo pero looking forward ako na magawa pa namin yung best namin pero ayun nga, medyo gulat pa rin.”
Santiago-Manabat, who joined the Chargers during the off-season, sees a lot of potential in the Chargers and believes that the young team has all the tools to compete in the PVL. She, however, said that the team still needs time to adjust before they reach their full potential.
“Sobrang laki ng potential ng mga batang kasama ko and nakikita ko yun kasi every training naman talagang nagpu-push sila. Ilang weeks pa lang yung binigay namin, ilang weeks pa lang kami nagsama-sama ganito na yung nilalaro namin,” said Santiago-Manabat, who is a two-time V-League MVP.
“What if mabigyan pa kami ng pagkakataon na ilang months pa, ilang years pa na kami yung magkakasama for sure yung potential ng mga bata, yung potential ng mga bagong pasok pag nabuo is good yung magiging path namin,” she added.
In their next game, Santiago-Manabat wants to see the Chargers communicate more inside the court and strengthen their mental toughness, especially when playing from behind.
“Siguro more on ano pa kami, communication and yung sa F2 kasi hindi pa namin nakikita yung laro so kailangan pa namin panoorin, pagaralan, and syempre kung ano yung mga lapses namin kanina sa team namin, focusan pa namin kung ano yung sinabi na instructions yun dapat yung magawa namin,” said the National University product.
“Siguro yung focus kailangan na once na natalo na ng first set, kailangan maibalik agad yung pagiging positive side na parang kailangan lumaban, hindi porket bata kami kailangna ganito na. Kailangan kung ano yung ginagawa ng ibang teams ganun din yung gagawin namin.”
Akari will take on F2 Logistics on Saturday at 6:30 PM.