UAAP Season 81: I have to move on -- Estranero

Mark Escarlote on Apr 15, 2019 03:32 PM
UAAP Season 81: I have to move on -- Estranero
I can cry. I can like feel bad but then at the end of the day I still have to move on with my life -- Ayel Estranero

The best way to end a heartache is to move on and hope for a better tomorrow.

Graduating setter Ayel Estranero felt the agonizing pain of defeat when Audrey Paran of National University hammered the match-clinching kill.

It was a match that the Lady Maroons couldn't afford to lose as they already had their backs against the wall in the race for a seat in the UAAP Season 81 women's volleyball Final Four.

But fate was cruel to UP.

Fate made the Lady Maroons fly high in the preseason with championships in the Premier Volleyball League and the Philippine Superliga only to pull them crashing back to earth as fast at it lifted them to ecstasy.

It seemed like fate made the rookie-laden Lady Bulldogs as an instrument in its cruel trick to bring pain and sorrow to a team who came into the season brimming with confidence and in high spirits.

Just like in their first meeting, the UP-NU duel went the distance and it was like déjà vu, only the team with the strongest will to win would survive.  

The Lady Maroons were the first to blink.

UP had a chance to put the game away but squandered a match point advantage and watched NU walk away with a 25-21, 26-24, 17-25, 23-25, 17-15, win that showed the Lady Maroons the exit door.

It may be just their 13th game of the season, but the weight of the loss felt that it was their last.

For Estranero, it marked the penultimate game of her colorful five-year collegiate career.

The pain was real.

“Masakit syempre kasi you’ve dreamed so much. I dreamed so much for my team, even for my seniors like nandu’n talaga ‘yung goal pa rin na to get at least a Final Four finish or a Finals. Who wouldn’t want that kind of finish in your graduating year,” uttered Estranero keeping her emotions in check despite the obvious sorrow in her eyes during the postgame interview outside of the MOA Arena.

With a 6-7 win-loss record, the Diliman-based squad will finish at fifth spot whatever the result of its season-ending match against Adamson University on April 27. 

“I can cry. I can like feel bad but then at the end of the day I still have to move on with my life,” Estranero accepted. “At least think about what’s next for me and my volleyball career.”

What’s left for Estranero and fellow graduating player Marian Buitre in their swan song is to give it all out in their last battle as part of the Lady Maroons.

There were a lot of what ifs that could run through Estranero’s mind like what if they won? What if they didn’t squander four match points in their first round meeting against NU? What if they got a couple more wins?  

Too many what ifs to regret.

But Estranero doesn’t want to dwell in the past. She’s moving on.

Just like the seniors who moved on before her.



Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles

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