Tinry naming ibalik ang winning ways ng UP -- Bersola
University of the Philippines seniors Kathy Bersola, libero Princess Gaiser and Nicole Tiamzon.
University of the Philippines seniors Kathy Bersola, Nicole Tiamzon and injured libero Princess Gaiser bid adieu to their teammates, coaches and supporters shortly after their semifinals hopes crumbled in a painful three-set loss.
The Lady Maroons bowed down to Far Eastern University, 16-25, 16-25, 25-27, and were booted out of the semis picture with a 7-7 win-loss card to close their 79th UAAP women’s volleyball tournament campaign Wednesday at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan.
It’s not the kind of ending they wanted for their swan song but the trio left an indelible mark for a team that for more than a decade struggled to come up with wins and decent finishes.
The trio left a legacy that changed the culture of the Diliman-based squad.
“I think ‘yung attitude na kahit na lumagpak ka, ma-down ka, ‘wag kang papayag na ‘di ka aangat,” said Tiamzon after she and the rest of the team shed all the tears they can shed after their loss.
Bersola, Tiamzon and Gaiser, whose last season came to an abrupt end after sustaining a left ACL tear midway in the tournament, were there when the team clawed its way up from cellar-dwellers to contenders.
“May mga na-achieve naman kami kahit papaano. Siguro ang pinaka-legacy namin is, tinry talaga naming ibalik ang winning ways ng UP,” said Season 76 Best Blocker Bersola.
The veteran troika with the help of young guns Diana Carlos and Isa Molde turned UP’s volleyball campaign around last year as they ended a 13-year semis drought.
The Diliman-based squad surrendered to the then Alyssa Valdez-led Ateneo de Manila in the semis but their feat sent them back on the radar as contenders.
“I feel blessed na naabutan ko ‘to na from two wins to seven wins, that means a lot to me kasi we never expected it to be like this,” Gaiser said. “We just train every day and hindi namin alam na ito ang mangyayari. So it was a blessing.”
“And super swerte talaga namin nina Kathy (and Nicole) na naabutan namin ang ganito. Na sobrang pinagtutuunan ng pansin ang volleyball unlike before,” she added.
UP prepared hard for this season joining all the three conferences of the V-League last year and setting up a training camp in Japan.
The Lady Maroons started the season with a bang, winning four straight against Adamson, University of the East, defending champion De La Salle and University of Sto. Tomas, making their presence felt early and led to talks of them making a better finish this year.
But four straight losses and a shaky second round doomed their chances of making it to the next round.
Now that their season is done, they now face a different challenge – finishing their Sports Science course.
Summa cum laude candidate Bersola and Tiamzon are concentrating on their thesis while Gaiser is looking to enter med school.
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