NU's Alolino feeling the pressure
Tricia Robredo on Sep 02, 2015 10:08 PM
“Work in progress pa kami siyempre. We’re trying to work out yung pagkawala nina Troy (Rosario) at kung paano mapupunan yun ng mga bago. Minsan struggling, pero okay naman yun para matuto kami.” --- Gelo Alolino
Five former Bulldogs were drafted in the PBA the other week and to say that the National University community was ecstatic would be an understatement.
However, this year’s captain ball of the defending champs admit that they struggle with the departure of their veterans (and first round picks) Troy Rosario and Glenn Khobuntin.
“Work in progress pa kami siyempre. We’re trying to work out yung pagkawala nina Troy at kung paano mapupunan yun ng mga bago. Minsan struggling, pero okay naman yun para matuto kami.”
Although he already had a share of leadership responsibilities the previous year, Gelo Alolino feels more pressure this time around. “As a captain, extension ako ni coach sa court. Mas mabigat yung responsibility sa akin ngayon, especially with the new guys.”
Nevertheless, Alolino told ABS-CBN Sports that what’s great about being a part of the pack is that he gets to share the pressure with everyone else.
“Naging smaller line-up kami pero I believe na kung dedepensa kami – if we will it, kaya pa rin naman gawin. Last year, malaking part yun sa team. Nandiyan naman sina coach to do the game plan, at marami pa naman sa aming natira para mag-execute at dalhin yung team.”
Unlike before when no one really paid much attention to the Bulldogs, watchful eyes are now on the Sampaloc-based squad. Winning the championship after a 60-year drought was a grand achievement, but they know it’s not enough to stop there.
“Dati rinig ko pahirapan talaga. And before, NU daw known as nasa ilalim lagi. Now under Sir Hans (Sy), very supportive yung managers at binibigay nila yung mga kailangan namin – dorms, food, gym. Malaking bagay yun as an athlete.”
So now the least they could do is live up to the expectations and to the name they have created for themselves in Season 77. With the rise of the seven other teams raring to make a splashing comeback, it’s going to be difficult for the Bulldogs to defend their crown. But they made what seemed impossible last year happen so there’s no reason for them not to take another shot at it.