UST reunion sparks Petron’s surge

If there’s one key factor that makes Petron’s chemistry fluid, it is the reunion among current and former stars from University of Santo Tomas (UST).

The familiarity among these Tigresses is said to be making the job easier for veteran setter Rhea Dimaculangan, who transferred from Foton to orchestrate the offense of the Blaze Spikers in the PSL All-Filipino Conference.

Dimaculangan reunited with her ex-teammates in college in Aiza Maizo-Pontillas and Carmela Tunay together with current Tigresses Sisi Rondina and Ria Meneses.

But the highlight of their get-together is the vintage connection of Dimaculangan and Maizo-Pontillas that still works until today under the mentorship of former UST coaches Shaq Delos Santos and Ian Fernandez.

The last time their tandem won a crown was in Season 72 of the UAAP when UST swept De La Salle in a best-of-three title showdown with Dimaculangan emerging as Finals Most Valuable Player.

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At home

Dimaculangan and Maizo-Pontillas last played together when they bannered RC Cola-Air Force in the 2014 Philippine Superliga (PSL) All-Filipino Conference.

The now-defunct Raiders then bagged the silver medal while the Generika-Army led by Tina Salak, Jovelyn Gonzaga and Rachel Anne Daquis reigned supreme.

It took them three years before they finally reunite in Petron.

Dimaculangan said she feels at home with the Blaze Spikers having her favorite spiker in Maizo-Pontillas on board.

[quote]”Mas nagiging komportable ako sa loob ng court.”[/quote]

[quote]”Si Nang (Maizo-Pontillas) kasi hindi siya masyadong masalita pero alam mo na ready siya kapag kailangan talaga ng puntos, nandoon talaga palagi yung pagiging veteran niya.”[/quote]

In Petron’s latest conquest of Generika-Ayala, the duo was hailed as Best Players of the Game.

Dimaculangan tossed 26 excellent sets while Maizo-Pontillas uncorked 17 points to survive a scare from the Lifesavers.

[quote]”Nandoon na rin talaga ‘yung connection.”[/quote]

[quote]”Pero minsan napapansin din namin na kapag wala siyang laro, nawawalan din ako ng laro so parang pinag-uusapan namin na ‘oh Nang dapat maayos ‘yung laro mo para maging maayos din ‘yung laro ko’.”[/quote]

In the end, the prized playmaker paid homage to their burning Thomasian pride in fueling Petron’s drive to the crown.

[quote]”Masaya at sobrang nakaka-proud kasi hindi nawawala yung tatak ng pagiging Thomasian namin kaya kumabaga tingin palang alam na namin kung anong gagawin sa loob ng court.”[/quote]

[quote]”Hindi lang kami basta team, family kami.”[/quote]