By: Ohmer Bautista
It was definitely a birthday to remember for MJ Phillips.
Sta. Lucia’s opening-day win over Marinerang Pilipina might go down as one of the most memorable moments in her young career. After all, she towed the Lady Realtors to a straight-set victory with a 22-point, 16-dig double-double performance – all on her 24th birthday.
“So special. When I woke up today, I had a good feeling that today, we’re gonna win. And on my birthday, that is just an icing on the cake,” the Fil-Am spiker beamed.
But more than her fine statline and a win to boot on her very special day, a bigger achievement lies underneath – a complete recovery on her shoulder injury.
“It’s good. There’s no pain,” confided the native of Carson, California.
“I did eight months of recovery.”
Phillips – who sparingly played in PSL Grand Prix – did not delve into the other injury she had nursed in the past, which was on her achilles tendon. But the fact that she had the bounce to bury spike after spike on Saturday evening goes to show how she has kept her health in check.
And her coach, Babes Castillo, is more than glad to see Phillips healthy.
“Kung mas may rhythm ka pa, kung mas maka-connect ka pa doon sa puso ng team,” the former National U mentor bared. “I think mas malaki pa mapo-produce niya.
“Very happy for MJ.”
Now that she’s finally regaining her bearings, Phillips believes that the key to further improve herself is confidence. And with the help of her teammates, she knows she can do better.
“My confidence is slowly building. That’s the key this conference, just building my confidence back up,” she shared. “And the support of my team really helps.
“Good start. I know that I can do better.”
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