UAAP 80 Menís Volleyball: FEU coach Rey Diaz lauds Ateneoís maturity
Santino Honasan on Apr 25, 2018 05:51 PM
ďMagaling kasi talaga ang Ateneo sa composure, which is talagang sa maturity nakukuha yan eh, siguro yun pa talaga yung kulang namin, yung maturity namin. Mag-cocompose kami ng isang puntos, sa susunod na balikan nawawala. Siguro yun yung talaga dapat naming ayusin.Ē
Based solely on how the elimination round went for these two squads, one would argue that the second-seeded Far Eastern University Tamaraws would be tested, but would eventually come out on top over defending champions Ateneo de Manila University in their UAAP Season 80 Men's Volleyball semifinals matchup.
Having topped the Blue Eagles twice in the regular season, FEU entered the semifinals carrying a twice-to-beat advantage.
After Marck Espejo’s herculean 55-point outing that willed Ateneo to a five-set win over FEU last Saturday, the series was ultimately reduced to a do-or-die match, with the winner going on to face National University in the Finals.
Wednesday afternoon at the San Juan Arena, FEU saw their twice-to-beat advantage go up in smoke as Espejo and Ish Polvorosa once again paced the Blue Eagles to a four-set win to secure their fifth-straight semifinals appearance.
It was a bitter ending to the Tamaraws’ season, as they fell twice to a team that they had already beaten twice.
“Kung kelan pa yung dulo, kung titignan mo talaga, dun pa nawalan ng panalo,” said FEU Head Coach Rey Diaz after the match. “pero kasama yun eh.”
FEU had the momentum heading into the Final Four, but in the end, it was Ateneo’s experience and maturity that took over.
The Blue Eagles are on their way to their fifth straight finals appearance.
“Magaling kasi talaga ang Ateneo sa composure, which is talagang sa maturity nakukuha yan eh, siguro yun pa talaga yung kulang namin, yung maturity namin. Mag-cocompose kami ng isang puntos, sa susunod na balikan nawawala. Siguro yun yung talaga dapat naming ayusin.”
When asked what the main difference was between their first two matches in the eliminations and the final two matches in the semifinals, Diaz again touched on the maturity of the Ateneo team in general.
Malaki eh, ultimo yung posisyon ni Marck, nag-iba. Pero yung maturity kasi ni Ateneo kasi, nila Marck, nila Ish, yun parin yung nag-dala, nila Baysa, mahirap kasi makuha yun ng isang snap lang.”
And while it wasn’t the way that they would have wanted to go out, Diaz isn’t taking the loss as a negative. Rather, the second-year men’s mentor is looking at the season as a win, considering their standing from last season.
“Hindi parin nakakapang-hinayang kasi compared naman sa performance ng mga bata last season, talaga namang makikita natin na tumaas yung level, kaya ang challenge sa amin, dapat tumaas ulit kami ngayon, hindi kami mag-babase sa laro ng kalaban. Kailangan umangat yung level namin ulit, yun ulit yung objective namin, dapat may matutunan ulit sila sa amin.”
“Sabi ko nga sa kanila kanina eh, yung skills, yung condition ng katawan, endurance, stamina, agility, natuturo yan eh, pero yung experience na nangyari nitong semifinals, hindi namin kayang ituro yun. Pero lahat kami, sigurado ako, may natutunan kami doon, kaya sana ka’ko i-treasure namin yun and gamitin namin para sa next season. Sana makabawi kami.” Diaz added.
Diaz hopes that with these tests, his young Tamaraws gain the maturity and the experience that they need to eventually take the leap.
“Siguro itong mga dumadating sa amin na test, test to para mag-improve naman kami in terms of maturity.”
With only libero Rikko Marmeto leaving next year, Rey Diaz and FEU could be looking at another strong showing in Season 81.