Ang goal namin ngayon is mag-champion -- Bernadeth Pons
Mark Escarlote on Feb 01, 2017 06:41 PM
Bernadeth Pons looks to lead Far Eastern University in ending a long dry spell for UAAP's winningest women's volleyball team.
Far Eastern University top hitter Bernadeth Pons sat on the court together with her teammates inside their gym watching as school officials feted former Queen Tamaraw Rachel Anne Daquis.
FEU retired Daquis’ no. 3 jersey to honor the volleyball great that gave the Morayta-based school its 29th and last title almost a decade ago.
Pons and FEU almost made it to the Finals last year, three set wins away to be exact, but it was just not the Lady Tams’ time.
Using that third place finish as motivation and the words of Daquis about working hard to achieve one’s goal as an inspiration, Pons is determined to bring the team to promised land in Season 79.
“Syempre ang goal namin ngayon is mag-champion,” the bold declaration of the fourth year spiker. “Last season, sobrang lapit na namin pero kulang pa rin. Parang ‘yung last season ‘yung magiging motivation namin for this coming season.”
It was indeed that close.
FEU forced eventual champion De La Salle to a do-or-die Final Four match but came short, losing in straight sets in an emotional game that saw setter Gyzelle Sy’s collegiate career come to a close.
“Sobra (sayang) kasi syempre, nakuha namin yung Game 1 tapos parang, yung level ng confidence namin noong Game 2, 'Kayang-kaya natin ito.' Parang ganun, pero wala, wala, sobrang kulang pa, kulang pa talaga,” she said.
Pons added that the valuable lessons and experiences they gained last year prepared them for the battles ahead.
“’Yung inexperience ng bawat isa sa amin, ‘yung maturity inside the court (na nangyari last year), so ayun ‘yung winork out namin para sa season na ito,” said Pons. “Tapos for this season, ayaw na namin ma-feel ‘yung regret sa huli. Gusto namin na kung ano ‘yung goal namin, dire-diretso na kami doon. Kasi ‘yun nga, sobrang nakakapang-hinayang pagka-andyan na, tapos biglang mawawala.”
With only Sy leaving after last season, Pons is confident that the team can surpass their finish in Season 78.
“Oo naman kasi every day naman kami nagpapaka-hirap sa training, so syempre, para sa amin, gusto rin namin mag-pay off lahat ng sacrifices namin, yung paghihirap namin sa training,” she said.
Pons last season had an impressive statistics of 15.4 points per game with 33.74% success rate in attacks while chipping in an average of 2.38 digs per set on the defensive end. She is expected to deliver the same if not more numbers this year.
The Lady Tamaraws will get an early rematch with De La Salle on February 5 at the Big Dome.
Catch the UAAP Season 79 women's volleyball tournament starting February 4, Saturday live on S+A, S+A HD channel 166 and via livestream.
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