I have to move on -- Soltones on leaving NCAA without a title
Ayokong sabihin na hindi magaling teammates ko kasi hindi ko naman siguro magagawa 'yung mga dapat kong gawin kundi dahil sa kanila -- San Sebastian College's Grethcel Soltones
Outgoing San Sebastian College - Recoletos player Grethcel Soltones tried her best.
She tried to carry her team in four championship appearances without bearing fruit.
It was a painful experience.
But Soltones never shed a tear when the final whistle was blown and the Lady Stags for the second straight year wasted a thrice-to-beat advantage in an attempt to end a six-year title drought.
She just accepted her fate.
Just like last season but against a different opponent, SSC-R came up short losing to Arellano University 15-25, 25-22, 23-25, 16-25, Tuesday in Game 3 of the 92nd NCAA women’s volleyball Finals at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig City.
Soltones flashed her signature child-like smile and was even lively when they were called to receive their second straight bride’s maid finish – her last in the collegiate ranks.
“Wala. Wala lang. Nag-enjoy lang ako. Ganoon talaga eh,” said Soltones, who toiled for 25 points - all from kills – while adding 17 excellent receptions and 14 digs.
Soltones will leave the NCAA as a three-time Season Most Valuable Player and the most explosive scorer in the league for the past five years without a single title.
“Hindi ko masabi ngayon 'yung buong nararamdaman ko kasi nga wala akong nakuha sa last year ko,” said Soltones, who last year also saw her team bow down to College of St. Benilde in four games with SSC-R also holding a thrice-to-beat advantage. “Pero I have to move on from what happened tonight and look forward sa mga next na opportunity na darating.”
Soltones, who averaged 22 points per game in the series, most of the time did most of the scoring chores in the Finals. It didn’t help that SSC-R’s middles Joyce Sta. Rita and Katherine Villegas as well as Nikka Dalisay and Dangie Encarnacion struggled to get the same game they had when the Lady Stags swept the 9-game elimination round to advance in the Finals outright with the incentive.
“Ayoko sabihin na hindi magaling teammates ko kasi hindi ko naman siguro magagawa 'yung mga dapat kong gawin kundi dahil sa kanila,” said Soltones, who deflected the criticisms on her teammates. “Siguro 'yung teammates ko bata pa lang - hindi din naman ako matured na player - kulang lang talaga sila sa sinasabi ni coach na tapang at willingness magstep-up.”
“'Yun 'yung dapat nilang i-improve. Na-expose na ako ni coach sa mga ganyang dikdikan, 'yun lang din siguro kulang sa kanila,” said Soltones.
With her NCAA indoor volleyball career over, Soltones now sets her eyes to claiming three-peat in beach volleyball later this month.
“ Sa beach volleyball na lang (ako babawi), and I'm going to get it,” she vowed.
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