UAAP Season 82: Santiago gives back to Lady Bulldogs
Mark Escarlote on Mar 08, 2020 04:12 PM
Pinupuntahan ko itong mga bata na ito sa training, hindi lang araw-araw, pero yun nga sini-share ko sa kanila kung ano ang mga tinuro sa akin ng mga naging coaches ko sa Japan -- Jaja Santiago (Photo: Arvin Lim)
National University product Jaja Santiago is giving back to her alma mater by helping the current pack of Lady Bulldogs prepare in their campaign in the UAAP Season 82 women’s volleyball tournament.
On vacation after her stint in the Japan V. Premier League playing for third place winners Saitama Ageo Medics, Santiago spends her free time sharing the things she learned playing abroad to her juniors.
“Pinupuntahan ko itong mga bata na ito sa training, hindi lang araw-araw, pero yun nga sini-share ko sa kanila kung ano ang mga tinuro sa akin ng mga naging coaches ko sa Japan,” shared Santiago on Sunday while watching the Lady Bulldogs’ match against Adamson University.
Santiago’s efforts to help the team paid off as NU grabbed its second straight win with a sweep of the Lady Falcons, 26-24, 25-14, 25-21, to remain on top of the leaderboard.
“So far nakikita ko ang ganda ng improvement,” said Santiago. “Ang tatangkad ng mga players and well-disciplined ang mga bata ngayon.”
The victory gave NU its best start in two years or since the swan song of Season 80 Most Valuable Player Santiago when the Lady Bulldogs won five straight matches.
All thanks to Santiago’s contribution.
"Si Jaja after her Japan stint n’ya she went back to the Philippines, pumupunta siya sa training,” said NU coach Norman Miguel. “Binibisita n’ya ‘yung girls, kami and then nagi-impart siya ng techniques kung pano sa blocking, pano magri-read and react. Sumasabay siya sa practice namin. She did that ng three visits para mag-impart.”
Santiago’s presence according to graduating senior Audrey Paran boosts the team’s morale and she serves as an inspiration for her and the rest of the team.
“Si Ate Jaja talaga is someone I look up to in terms of leadership, in terms of skills lahat talaga,” said Paran, who paced NU with 15 points. “Saka nu’ng time niya talaga lahat kami si Ate Ja yung sandalan.”
“This time na-inspire ako parang, Ate Ja ito yung natutunan ko sa kanya, ito yung pinapakita mo before. Ako naman time ko naman ngayon,” added Paran.
Santiago will stay in the country up until the end of March before flying back to Japan. But for the meantime, the versatile player will be here to assist in training the Lady Bulldogs.
“Nakakatuwa talaga na may spot pa rin sila kay Jaja,” Miguel ended.
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