There is no substitute for hard work.
UST learned this valuable lesson Sunday when it bounced back from a disappointing loss to Ateneo by beating the UP Lady Maroons in four sets for a 2-1 win-loss record in the UAAP Season 81 Women’s Volleyball tournament.
While they look hapless in their net battle against the Lady Eagles, the Tigresses turned the tables on the Lady Maroons by scoring 11 kill blocks including a game-clincher from sophomore Milena Alessandrini.
At the forefront of UST’s tighter blocking, however, is rookie KC Galdones, who scored five of her seven points from blocks.
On the quick adjustment the España crew displayed, Galdones shares: “Nag overload po kami sa blocking. Last training po nilaban po kami sa lalake para mas naka-penetrate po ‘yung kamay sa net kaya ‘yun po siguro ang naging resulta.”
“Nag peptalk din po sa akin si coach D (Doloiras) na isipin ko lang daw po na kaya ko. May height naman daw po ako. Sinabihan lang po ako na bilisan ko pa ‘yung footwork at ‘yun naman po ang ginawa ko,” she added.
This early sign of determination has earned Galdones a spot not only in the Tigresses’ roster but also in the squad’s starting rotation.
Though much is left to be desired in her all-around play, the former UE Junior Warrior is delighted in successfully manning the net against top-notch attackers such as Isa Molde, Justine Dorog, and Tots Carlos.
“Hindi po madali,” she admitted. “Respeto pa rin po kay Ate Tots (Carlos) tsaka kay Ate Isa (Molde) kasi malalakas nga po pumalo. Tapos hindi lang po malakas, matalino din po kasi kahit naka-penetrate ‘yung block namin gumagawa pa rin po sila ng paraan para maipasok ‘yung bola.”
With another crucial match on UST’s full plate coming up, Galdones vows to not rest on her laurels especially now that she has tasted the rewards of going the extra mile.
“Hihingi po ako ng dagdag overload sa blocking and sa service po,” shared the middle blocker on her preparations for their next game.
“Sabi din ni coach Kung Fu na kahit hindi ako nakakatulong sa atake, basta makatulong ako sa blocks and sa serves ko. Sabi din kasi ni coach malakas na daw po ‘yung service ko kasi mabigat na daw po. Kailangan lang is consistency,” she added.
The Tigresses will be facing long-time rival FEU Lady Tamaraws in a 2 PM match happening on Saturday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.