UAAP Season 81: Lady Warriors now with winning mentality
Mark Escarlote on Feb 08, 2019 10:37 AM
University of the East will bring in a winning mentality come UAAP Season 81.
Gone will be the days of University of the East languishing at the bottom of the standings.
This is the kind mentality Lady Warriors rookie coach Karl Dimaculangan wants his wards to possess as they look forward to a good showing in UAAP Season 81 women’s volleyball tournament.
Dimaculangan hopes that UE’s third place finish in the Philippine Superliga Collegiate Grand Slam will fuel his team’s drive in the competition that is set to open shop on February 16.
“More on attitude kasi ayaw na din nila ‘yung ganu’n na laging talo,” said Dimaculangan, who took over the position of interim mentor and UE athletic director Rod Roque.
Roque replaced Francis Vicente, who was sacked by the management after a 2-45 record in three and half years as coach, five games into the previous season.
The former University of Sto. Tomas setter has in his hands the challenge of surpassing the two victories registered by the Lady Warriors last season – the team’s most decent record in the past six years.
“Siguro, personally meron (pressure) kasi ang expectations ng tao lagi once na makitang may improvement ini-expect din nila ‘yung mga panalo,” he said. “Hindi na lang namin masyado ‘yun iniisip at focus na lang kami sa training, saka na ‘yung expectations.”
The Lady Warriors lost veteran hitter Shaya Adorador, who has exhausted all of her playing years last season, but will have most of its core returning.
Prized libero Kath Arado, spiker Judityh Abil, skipper Roselle Baliton, setter Laizah Bendong and Jasmine Alcayde are in their last campaign for the red and white. Also making their return are Seth Rodriguez and Me-Anne Mendrez, whose vast improvement earned her the recognition as 2nd Best Outside Hitter in the PSL Collegiate Grand Slam where Bendong also won as Best Setter.
For Arado, the Lady Warriors’ goal this season is to win as many games as they can and erase the stigma of being the league’s doormat for more than half a decade.
“‘Yung goal kasi napag-uusapan namin. Kung ano ang goal ko ‘yun ang goal ng bawat isa sa team namin. Hindi naman kami ‘yung nasa top teams last season na counted na ‘yung kailangan na panalo eh, sa amin bawat game importante,” said Arado, who in the pre-season won the Best Libero award both in the PSL Collegiate Grand Slam and in the All-Filipino Conference while playing for Generika Ayala.
“Lahat naman gusto ng bawat teams Final Four so ang nilu-look up namin every game namin panalo. ‘Yun ang goal namin na every game namin panalo,” she added. “Hindi na ‘yung last season na dalawa o tatlo ang panalo. Ang importante sa amin eh bawat game namin. Yun ang goal namin. Hindi ‘yung madikit lang ang score. Hindi lang ‘yung good game lagi nandoon na ‘yung win. ’Yun na ang goal namin, ang win talaga.”
Last year, UE lagged behind in attacks (20.71% success rate) and blocking (1.28 per set) as well in the setting (6.65 per set) department.
Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles