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Win or Lose, Roger Gorayeb is a fulfilled coach

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Wherever coach Roger Gorayeb goes, success isn’t usually too far behind. Gorayeb takes pride in building San Sebastian’s program and bringing the Ateneo Lady Eagles to the promised land multiple times.

Now with the NU Lady Bulldogs, Gorayeb is in familiar territory; trying to bring an upstart program to a UAAP title. He’s now one step closer to his goals with the Lady Bulldogs just one-game away from claiming an all-important, morale-boosting Shakey’s V-League title.

Just two years ago, he was on the other side of the fence; coaching the Ateneo Lady Eagles featuring Rachel Daquis against the NU Lady Bulldogs spearheaded by the same Santiago sisters in the SVL Finals. The National team head coach remembers those times fondly.

“Naalala ko ‘yun. Service errors nagpatalo sa amin noon,” Gorayeb recalled Game Three of that series when his team held a comfortable lead, only to squander it due mostly to miscues at the service area.

He then continued, explaining why this Finals series is a win-win situation for him. “Masaya ako kasi kahit ‘yung mga nakakalaban ko sa Ateneo ngayon, ako pa nagrecruit nung karamihan. Nandoon pa din ‘yung naitulong ko sa kanila para makarating sila sa Finals. Ang sabi ko nga sa NU, ‘yung sitwasyon namin ngayon, parang sitwasyon din namin ng Ateneo noong simula. Nakakatuwa lang isipin na ngayon, sabay pa kami nakarating ng Finals,” Gorayeb explained. Coach Roger recruited not only Alyssa Valdez but also much of Ateneo’s current starting six.

When he first faced the Lady Eagles as NU’s head coach, Coach Gorayeb already revealed that he dreamed of facing the Ateneo in the UAAP Finals when the time comes. Coach Roger never won a title with the Lady Eagles despite his multiple Finals appearance. With NU, he is again one game away from vaulting another program to the top.

Game Three of the SVL Finals will be on Sunday, October 4, 12:45 p.m. at the FilOil Flying V Arena.

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Miguel Luis Flores fell face first into sports writing in high sch9l and has never gotten up. He reluctantly stumbled into the volleyball beat when he started with Tiebreaker Times three years ago. Now, he has waded through everything volleyball - from its icky politics to the post-modern art that is Jia Morado's setting.

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