Water Defenders ‘exhausted,’ but offer no excuses for poor play

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Jul 26, 2017 08:42 PM
Water Defenders ‘exhausted,’ but offer no excuses
HEAVY WORKLOAD. Grethcel Soltones says BaliPure needs to find better balance outside the court.

BaliPure took care of business against Adamson University on Thursday to get back on track.

Dispatching the Lady Falcons in four sets, the Water Defenders rose to a 3-3 record and a tie for the fourth and final playoff berth.

Despite the much-needed win, however, BaliPure players did not look like the team that just won when they exited the venue.

Asked if they were happy with the bounce back win, a somber Grethcel Soltones said, “No. As we can see po, unlike last conference, hindi kami (ganun) as a team.”

In the previous conference, the Water Defenders played in the deciding Game 3 of the Finals before eventually ending as runners-up.

And in the eyes of head coach Roger Gorayeb, that top-level play seems to be missing from his girls nowadays. “Masama situation namin. ‘Di maganda nilalaro ng mga bata tapos ilang laro na yan,” he said.

Prior to the much-needed win, BaliPure suffered back-to-back losses.

Trying to pinpoint the cause of their struggles, Gorayeb said their training sessions have not been as intense as they were in the previous conference. “Nahihirapan din sila kasi ‘di kagaya ng nakaraan, ‘di kami nakakaensayo nang maayos. Sa amin ngayon, yung ensayo, laro-laro na lang, wala nang drills,” he shared.

Of course, that is not how the mentor wants things to be.

However, he has no say in the matter. “Ngayon kasi, marami sa kanila, may pasok sa klase tapos may ensayo sa team nila. Pagdating sa ensayo namin sa gabi, exhausted na sila,,” he said.

He then continued, “Yung iba pa nga, dalawang beses mag-ensayo sa school team tapos weights ng todo. Kaya iba na talaga kilos nila.”

Still, Gorayeb wanted to make it known that he is nothing but appreciative that his wards still come to practice and still come to play even while they have so much more responsibilities. “Ako naman, na-appreciate ko yung effort nila kasi everybody has to understand na parang kami lang ang may core na nag-aaral,” he said.

He then continued, “Sana maintindihan din ng fans na yung mga bata, they’re doing their best talaga. Yung activity nila sa school is taking its toll, pero as a team, we still play the best we can.”

As per the head coach, all but one of his 12 players is still in college.

However, Gorayeb is also re-assuring the BaliPure fans that they are not, and will not, make excuses. As he put it, “Naaawa din ako, pero ‘di pwedeng gawing excuse yun. Nandito kami not to make excuses, but to win games.”

The good news is top hitter Grethcel Soltones could only agree. “’Di naman excuse yung pagiging busy kasi ganun naman talaga yung collegiate players. So balance lang talaga siguro,” she said


Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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