What seemed to be a firm Season 81 armour for the University of Sto. Tomas’ women’s volleyball team is starting to show some cracks.
Just three days after EJ Laure’s announcement that she will sit out the upcoming UAAP season, UST’s head coach, Kung Fu Reyes, and assistant coach, Yani Fernandez, revealed that they will also be missing the services of veteran Tin Francisco.
Based on the MRI results Reyes sent to Volleyverse, Francisco suffered a complete tear of the ACL, an injury she sustained during the Finals of the inaugural PSL Collegiate Grand Slam.
Fans of the Tigresses were hopeful that Francisco, who has improved her skills and agility in the off-season, will recover in time for the opening of Season 81 happening on February 16 after she was seen in Baguio with the squad for a training camp the past week.
But clearly, this was not the case.
“Nagpasya siyang magpa-opera na,” said Fernandez through Facebook Messenger.
With this unfortunate development, the España squad will have to make adjustments and dig deep into their talent pool to fill the spot vacated by the middle blocker.
“Caitlin Viray na ‘yung isang (middle blocker),” shared the assistant coach. “Tapos maglalaro na lang ‘yung (isang spot) kila (KC) Galdones, (Donna) Tuason, (Janine) Balcorta or (Camille) Victoria.”
The Tigresses will be bannered by a troika of wing hitters in the graduating Sisi Rondina, sophomore Milena Alessandrini, and rookie Eya Laure in the forthcoming round of collegiate action.