UAAP Season 82: Mendrez, Rodriguez to give all on exit year
Mark Escarlote on Feb 07, 2020 01:38 PM
Siyempre last year kailangan all out ka, hindi puwede na sa dulo magsisisi ka na final year na, wala kang nagawa, wala kang natulong sa team mo -- graduating team captain Mean Mendrez (Photo: Arvin Lim)
Graduating players Mean Mendrez and Seth Rodriguez know too well what roles they must play as seniors of the University of the East Lady Warriors.
Marching in their final tour of duty, the duo is going all-out.
“Siyempre last year kailangan all out ka, hindi puwede na sa dulo magsisisi ka na final year na, wala kang nagawa, wala kang natulong sa team mo,” said open spiker Mendrez.
Named as team captain this season, the BS Psychology student will lead a squad trying to rebuild after the departure of last year’s vital cogs in Season 81 Best Libero Kath Arado, Best Setter Lai Bendong, do-it-all hitter Judith Abil and Roselle Baliton.
“So parang motivated kami na kailangan kami 'yung mag-lead sa team namin, disiplina pati makatulong na din,” said Mendrez.
With her frontline partner Baliton out, Rodriguez will be the rock of the Lady Warriors at the net. Other than her duty as middle blocker, she also wants to set an example for her younger teammates to follow.
Rodriguez wants to exit without any regrets.
“Kami [seniors] nga 'yung unang magpapakita, kami 'yung unang maga-all out, kami 'yung magdadala ng team. Tutulong sa coaches na madala 'yung team,” said Rodriguez. “Tapos 'yun nga, all-out kami kasi ayaw namin mangyari 'yung sa last season na puro pagsisisi.”
Rodriguez hopes to bring the lessons she learned playing for Marinerang Pilipina in the Philippine Superliga in the UAAP as the Lady Warriors eye a better showing after finishing with three wins in 14 games last season.
“Para sa akin, malaking natulong ng commercial team sa akin from PVL to PSL. Doon ko na-gain 'yung confidence ko at tiwala ko sa sarili,” she said.
Just like Rodriguez, Medrez thinks that her experience in the commercial league with Generika-Ayala further developed her skills to become an all-around player.
UE needs Mendrez not only on offense but also on defense, filling the void left by well-rounded player in Abil.
“Siguro parang nakatulong din sa akin 'yung sa commercial league ko. Sobrang tinututukan rin ako doon lalo nga na nakita nila na kulang ako lalo sa service receive,” said Mendrez, who averaged 12.2 points per game and ranked seventh in attack success percentage last season.
“Parang, 'yun, double time din lalo noong nabigyan ako ng opportunity na ako 'yung ginamit na first six doon,” she added. “So parang hindi ako pwedeng puro palo lang or something at ganyan, kailangan matuto talaga ako dumepensa, 'di lang kasi para sa sarili ko rin kasi para rin sa magiging team ko sa UE.”
With just a week before the start of their last journey in the collegiate ranks, Mendrez and Rodriguez are readying themselves for the battle ahead.
They will leave it all out on the floor.
Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles