Hanging Out with Alyssa Valdez: For the love of #KiefLy
ABS-CBN Sports on Jan 17, 2016 02:55 PM
"We both want to inspire and help others." -- Alyssa Valdez
Born in San Juan, Batangas, Alyssa Valdez is the only girl among four siblings. She got into sports because of her brothers who played basketball, volleyball and badminton. Eventually, Alyssa settled for volleyball and found “sisters” in the form of her teammates.
Last Thursday, January 14, 2016, Alyssa and her current “sisters”, the Ateneo Lady Eagles were at ABS-CBN for what was supposed to be a photo shoot. But, when the sound of “Five More Hours” by Deorro and Chris Brown started blaring through the speakers, the entire room came to life.
The reigning two-time UAAP Champions began bouncing off the floor and off of each other’s bodies while dancing to the beat of the song. In the middle of it all was Alyssa, whose smile shone the brightest. After winning back-to-back MVPs, three straight Best Scorer and two straight Best Server awards, Alyssa’s happiness level has reached phenomenal heights.
But, success is not the only thing that’s been keeping Alyssa happy lately.
Providing a huge inspirational boost for Alyssa as she gets set to take flight in her final UAAP season is the constant presence of fellow Ateneo athlete, Kiefer Ravena.
So, what happens when two of the top collegiate athletes from their respective sports who study in the same school get together?
The answer in this case is the social media phenomenon known as #KiefLy.
How it all began? Well, I decided to sit down with Alyssa and ask her myself. Enjoy!
ANTON ROXAS (AR): Alyssa, do you recall the first time you heard about Kiefer Ravena? And when did you guys meet?
ALYSSA VALDEZ (AV): The first time I heard about Kiefer was when I was in high school because of the UAAP. And then, I entered Ateneo and we would always see each other on campus. Lagi rin kaming pinapatawag together ng mga officials at admin. So… ayun! There!
AR: But, when was the first time you actually interacted? Do you remember?
AV: Siguro, nung nag training kami sa Moro. Kasi we do weights there and they train there too. I think he was in high school or first year college. I was ahead of him eh ng one year. We said “hi” to each other and started talking. Then, my teammates took pictures of us. Ayun lang. That was the very first ata.
AR: What was your first impression of Kiefer?
AV: A talented basketball player. And… totoo naman! Sa ugali… well, he’s really approachable. He’s really nice. But, when you get to know him better, super humble and down-to-earth. A man for others talaga si Kiefer.
AR: Right now, what is the official status of your relationship with Kiefer Ravena?
AV: [Gasps] Oh my God. This is so funny. [Laughs] This is so funny! [Laughs] We’re not like… together. But, for now, we’re just really there for each other because I have stuff to do. He’s also focusing on his career. We’re just there for each other and who knows, diba? Who knows naman what’s gonna happen next?
AR: No pressure to put a label on it?
AV: No, no.
AR: But then, you guys are really close. Like best friends, right?
AV: Yeah! We really are super best friends talaga. Sometimes, we’re both in the campus and he would text me and ask if we’re going to have lunch. We always talk. He sends me text messages before every game. He’s like that. He’s really a thoughtful friend. Super nice talaga.
AR: Kailan kayo naging mas close?
AV: Siguro, naging mas close kami na as in super close… mga two years already. We do endorsements together. We do programs together.
AR: Like Fastbreak 3 (A Charity Volleyball match for the victims of Typhoon Nona held last December 23.). How great was it to be able to join forces with Kiefer to help others?
AV: Yeah. Honestly, that’s my dream eh. To make an event and help others. It was super fulfilling. You’re happy because you enjoy the game and you’re with your friends, you’re with your family. But, you’re happier because you know you can help and put a smile on others faces. Even in your own little way.
AR: So, I guess that’s one of the things you like about being close to Kiefer? You two share a passion for helping others.
AV: Yeah! Yeah! We don’t really think exactly the same way but I think parehas lang yung intention. We both want to inspire and help others.
AR: On a personal level, what activities do you guys do for fun?
AV: Ako kasi, I really love to eat. And he knows that. Yun lang. We always go out to eat.
AR: Ano yung favorite food ninyong dalawa?
AV: OH! Frozen Brazo! It’s a cake. Diba the ‘Brazo de Mercedes’? It’s like frozen lang. I love cake. [Smiles]
AR: What’s it like when you’re with Kiefer?
AV: When you’re with Kiefer, there’s never a dull moment. Everyone knows na he’s really funny! He’s really nice. We always laugh. Even if super corny yung mga jokes niya. [Laughs]
AR: So, your hashtag is #KiefLy right?
AV: I can’t even… [Laughs].
AR: When did you first hear of this #KiefLy thing?
AV: Honestly, I really didn’t know that there was such a thing! I just found out through social media and it’s been going on na pala like… ang tagal na daw! I really didn’t know. At first, I didn’t know how to react. When we learned about this, we were super close na talaga. I wasn’t sure how to react because I was focused sa volleyball.
AR: Do you have a message for all the #KiefLy supporters?
AV: Oh my God, they’re so nice! They would always give gifts for the both of us. They really show how much they care and how much they love the both of us. We really appreciate it. Nakaka-bilib din talaga yung mga supporters ngayon because they would really show and give time and effort just to make you feel that you’re loved. So, well, thank you. Thank you so much talaga. Hopefully, mag stay sila kahit ano… no matter what happens.
UAAP Season 78 Women’s Volleyball starts on January 31, 2016.