With all the wear and tear Alyssa Valdez’s body has endured after participating in several volleyball tournaments this year, she hadn’t expected to see action in the recently-concluded Shakey’s V-League Reinforced Conference despite being listed in the PLDT Home Ultera Ultra Fast Spikers’ roster. After all, she had to follow Ateneo’s orders and has to be in tiptop shape come the UAAP Season 78 Women’s Volleyball Tournament next year.
However, the 5-foot-9 open hitter pulled off a massive surprise, defying her school’s instructions in the process, as she suited up in PLDT’s championship series against the Philippine Army Lady Troopers. With her presence on the court, Valdez was the difference-maker in PLDT’s championship sweep over Army.
In the first game, Valdez showed no signs of rust as she delivered game-high statistics of 25 points and 7 digs, following it up with a 22-point and 4-dig outing in the championship-sealing second game. Her performance was also enough to crown her as Finals MVP.
“Sobrang grateful ako na nabigyan ako ng opportunity to play for this championship. I mean, I’m lucky to play with the veterans also and it’s really an experience I need to be more mature in this one para pagpasok sa UAAP,” Valdez shared. “I’m really grateful and we’re really happy we got the win.”
Valdez admitted her defiance of school orders will have its consequences, but she still remained positive. The V-League has been a learning experience for her, and she was thankful to everyone who had supported her all throughout.
“I guess it’s done. We’re here already and it’s all done – everything. All I can say is everyone has to learn on what decision they made,” Valdez said when asked about her thoughts in suiting up for PLDT amidst Ateneo’s restrictions. “Character-building lang siguro ang nangyari sa mga instances last week and the last two months. But then, I’m really lucky to have everyone as a support sa akin. From the school, from PLDT Home Ultera and from the fans also.”
With the V-League season already done and with her decision spelling success for PLDT, Valdez has decided not to dwell on it anymore as it is now a thing of the past.
“Maybe let’s not dwell into it. We’re all here already and it’s a success in this conference,” Valdez remarked. “At the end of the day, sabi nga ni sir Em [Fernandez], dapat natuto ka sa mga decisions na ginawa mo.”
Everything has been said and done, and there is only one thing left on Valdez’s checklist: her UAAP swan song. With the UAAP Women’s Volleyball wars having become more competitive than ever, she said that her Ateneo team must prepare well to keep up with the league’s blistering pace.
“You know, It’s going to be exciting and it’s going to be competitive in the [upcoming] UAAP volleyball [tournament],” Valdez ended. “It’s going to be so fast for everyone since it’s [coming after] the holidays, so we have to also sacrifice our time for our families and for our loved ones because we have to prepare in this coming UAAP.”
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