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Si Coach Boc ang game-changer ko -- Dawn Macandili

If there is one person that multi-awarded libero Dawn Macandili would give credit to for all that she has achieved in her career aside from college coach Ramil de Jesus it would be assistant coach Benson Bocboc. The quiet and soft-spoken De La Salle University deputy has been De Jesus’ numbers guy on the Lady Spikers bench, his reliable scout and a trusted strategist. [Related story:  DLSU's weapon against Ateneo: Clipboard and tablet] But for Macandili he is more than just DLSU’s man who crunches numbers or the one who prepares scouting reports.   “Si Coach Boc ang game-changer ko,” Macandili said in her appearance on Volleyball DNA hosted by Anton Roxas and Denden Lazaro. Macandili said that when Bocboc went on board as the Lady Spikers prepared for Season 78 – the start of DLSU’s third three-peat – he immediately went down to work to help strengthen DLSU’s floor defense particularly focusing on liberos Macandili and CJ Saga.     “Nu’ng dumating si Coach Boc, sobrang na-focus niya ang mga libero kasi ang style niya is Japanese training,” Macandili shared. “In-introduce niya kami sa mga drills na pang-Japanese. Sobrang na-amaze ako, ‘Wow Japanese style na defense.’” Macandili added that it was the first time since she joined the Lady Spikers that a practice session solely dedicated for liberos was added into their training schedule.    “Ang daming drills na pinapagawa sa amin. Natutuwa ako kasi I’m always looking forward to learning something new,” she said. Bocboc according to Macandili was very technical, correcting them down to the smallest details. “Lagi niya kaming ini-introduce sa techniques. Gusto ko siyang ma-master. So every training may pinapagawa siya sa amin. Iba rin kasi talaga siyang mag-correct, to the slightest detail,” said the Tanauan, Batangas pride. “Dun ko na-realize na volleyball is very technical. Di lang basta na marunong kang mag-receive, marunong kang mag-dig pass. Hindi, kung marunong kang mag-receive kailangan ganito ang form mo, kailangan ganito kababa, mga ganoon.” He came into the team at the most critical time as DLSU was then shifting to a new approach to its system following two straight heartbreaking championship losses to the powerhouse Alyssa Valdez-led archrival Ateneo de Manila University Lady Eagles. “[Up to the] smallest details ang itinuturo niya sa amin and makikita mo talaga ang effect niya sa training and sa game,” said Macandili. Under Bocboc’s guidance, Macandili had her breakout season in 2016 as she played a key role in the Lady Spikers’ ascent back to the UAAP throne. Macandili in Season 78 was named Best Receiver, which she would win again the following year, and Best Digger while helping DLSU begin another three-year reign. Macandili would continue to rack in individual accolades, winning the Most Valuable Player award in the Philippine Superliga in 2016, being named the 2nd Best Libero in the 2017 AVC Asian Women’s Senior Championship as a member of the national team before wrapping up her UAAP career by bagging the Finals MVP in Season 80 - the first defense specialist to receive the honor. All thanks to the DLSU assistant coach. “Nag-iba talaga ang mindset ko nun sa volleyball na parang ang lawak niya na ang dami ko pang di alam. Doon ako na-engganyo na I want to learn more, more, more. I want to learn more talaga,” she said.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource: abscbn abscbnAug 24th, 2020

WHAT IF... Dawn Macandili landed in Ateneo?

Dawn Macandili is a La Sallian through and through. From prep to college, the former Lady Spikers libero was under the De La Salle University education system. Macandili’s volleyball career started during her grade school days in DLSU-Lipa that eventually landed her a ticket to DLSU-Zobel. There she won three UAAP titles and eventually won three more with the Lady Spikers  in college. The diminutive defense specialist wore the green and white with great pride. With that said, it’s hard to imagine Macandili wearing any other color. But then what if she did? Besides, Macandili admited that she did try to get into other schools for college in case her DLSU entrance exam didn't go out well. “Nag-try din ako mag-entrance exam sa ibang school kasi siyempre baka naman ang kapal ng mukha ko ‘De La Salle ako tapos bumagsak pala ako,’” said Macandili laughing during her appearance on Volleyball DNA hosted by Anton Roxas and Denden Lazaro. She mentioned two schools, Ateneo de Manila University and College of St. Benilde. So what if Macandili chose to don the blue and white instead of sister-schools DLSU and CSB’s colors? Now that’s interesting. Imagine the UAAP Season 78 and 79 Best Receiver and Season 78 Best Digger Macandili playing alongside Lazaro for the Lady Eagles. For sure, it will be a nightmare for the opposing teams considering the caliber of these liberos. Of course, Macandili would definitely take the backseat in her first two years in Seasons 76 and 77 as it would still be Lazaro’s and all-around hitter Ella De Jesus’ show. But with Lazaro and De Jesus exhausting all their playing eligibility after Season 77, the national team standout would’ve been Ateneo’s game-changer in Season 78. Macandili would’ve saved the Lady Eagles from their Achilles’ Heel: floor defense. Ateneo was sixth in digs and third in reception that season. She would’ve lightened up the defensive load on Ateneo hitters Alyssa Valdez and Jho Maraguinot. Her presence would also give the Lady Eagles a last line of defense in case opposing hitters got past middles Bea De Leon and Amy Ahomiro. And of course, it would’ve been quite a sight to watch the connection of Macandili with setter Jia Morado in Ateneo’s transition from defense to offense.         With these pieces set, the Lady Eagles’ reign might even be extended to a three-peat. Macandili’s last two seasons in Ateneo would surely be a challenging one after the departure of Valdez after Season 78 and Morado foregoing her final year in Season 80. But then again with a veteran in Macandili at the helm, Ateneo’s chances of winning another crown would’ve been higher.   ---     Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 26th, 2020

Dawn Macandili: It All Started With a Flying Shoe

Libero Dawn Macandili had to start somewhere before becoming Miss Everywhere. Her first venture into volleyball – the start of her successful journey – is as memorable as the pair of shoes she was wearing that day. Coming from a sports-loving family, it’s all but natural for the former De La Salle University star to be into sports. Her father played hoops for Jose Rizal University for a while but had to give it up as he was already juggling his studies and work. Macandili's paternal grandmother was a slugger on a softball team and her brother played basketball before shifting to tennis. Her eldest sister played volleyball and then became a team captain of a cheering squad in college while her other sister fell in love with tennis.   She ended up choosing volleyball as her sport.      “I started playing (volleyball) in the middle of fifth grade,” said Macandili, who recalled that she was around 11-years-old then when she joined the De La Salle University-Lipa team. The national team standout shared a humorous anecdote about her official volleyball game debut. Back then she was a spiker. “My first-ever official volleyball game was back when I was in Grade 5 and I was playing in Skechers with Velcro straps,” she said.   “In the middle of the game while I was running for the ball, one of my shoes came off,” Macandili continued. “That was the most memorable first game ever.” From there Macandili never looked back. Transferring to De La Salle-Zobel, Macandili was given a new role under Ramil De Jesus, who was also the coach La Salle's high school team.    “At first, I was a spiker for DLS-L’s grade school team because my teammates were almost the same height as me. When I moved up to the high school team I played libero as my height wouldn't suffice (as a spiker) anymore,” she said. “Our coach in the high school team was coach Ramil de Jesus. I, being a Lasallian at heart, could not imagine studying anywhere else but in DLSU,” Macandili added. “Another big factor was that coach Ramil is a great mentor and has produced elite players. I thought that if I was going to play in college. I was gonna play for him.” She won three high school UAAP titles from Season 73 to 75. Macandili was also a member of the team that won gold in the 2010 and 2012 Guam Youth Games and helped NCR win the Palarong Pambansa 2013 gold medal where she was also named Best Libero. Naturally, she moved up to play for the Lady Spikers in college. Her first two years weren’t as successful as she wished it to be after DLSU lost to Ateneo in the UAAP Finals in Season 76 and 77. The Lady Spikers got their payback in Season 78 and won two more titles as Macandili closed her collegiate career a champion. In that three-year reign, Macandili bagged two Best Receiver awards, Best Digger honors and the Season 80 Finals Most Valuable Player award.   She brought her success to the Philippine Superliga, winning numerous titles and individual accolades, including the 2016 All Filipino Conference MVP. Macandili joined the national team in 2017 and saw action in the 2017 Kuala Lumpur Southeast Asian Games, 2018 Asian Games in Indonesia and in the Manila SEA Games last December 2019.  Macandili was also recognized as 2nd Best Libero in the 2017 AVC Asian Senior Women’s Volleyball Championship held in Binan, Laguna. Looking back, Macandili can’t help but be grateful on that first volleyball game of hers. After all, the shoe that flew off somewhere brought her to where she is now.     That gem of a memorable moment never fails to put a smile on her face.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 8th, 2020

Monikers that made their mark in UAAP women’s volleyball

It is common in the Philippines for basketball players to earn nicknames given to them in the collegiate level or when they climbed up to the professional ranks. In volleyball, specifically in the UAAP, monikers for women’s volleyball players came a little much later. UAAP volleyball sportscasters and sportswriters use these monikers, mostly suggested by fans, not only to add color to their broadcasts and stories but to give an identity to outstanding players who earned their nicknames through their skills and passion for the sport. “Sa tingin ko karamihan sa mga monicker ngayon ay nanggagaling sa mga fans ng players,” said ABS-CBN S+A sports broadcast anchor Anton Roxas. “Pero bilang mga commentator, nasa amin na lang kung gagamitin namin ‘yung mga monicker na yun sa broadcast.” “Para sa akin, ang pinaka-importante, gusto ng player mismo yung monicker,” he added. “My personal rule is: If the player approves of the monicker, then you can use it.” We’ve gathered some of best monikers that made their mark in UAAP women's volleyball.   PHENOM When you think about Alyssa Valdez there are no other words that could best describe the best player to ever don the Lady Eagles jersey.     Her all-around game, powerful attacks, high volleyball IQ, leadership, charm and meteoric rise is nothing short of phenomenal and her nickname best describes it all.      Valdez lived up to her billing when she led the Lady Eagles to two straight titles while earning three consecutive Most Valuable Player awards in her five-year stint with Ateneo. Ateneo fans are known to give almost every Lady Eagle a moniker. Libero Denden Lazaro is the ‘Iron Eagle’ because she will deliver even if she’s hurt and all. Ella De Jesus is the ‘Ellavator’ because of her elevation when attacking, Jho Maraguinot is known as the ‘Eagle Claw’ being one of Ateneo’s best spikers while Maddie Madayag is the ‘Madzilla’ for being a monster at the net.  The ‘Fab Five’ of Fille Cainglet, Dzi Gervacio, Gretchen Ho, Jem Ferrer and A Nacachi will always be remembered as the most popular quintet in UAAP volleyball.       JIAMAZING Jia Morado makes her Ateneo teammates look good all the time. She never fails to amaze the crowd with her heady plays and drop shots.   CHERRY BOMB Cherry "Sisi" Rondina packs a lot of firepower in a small package. She may not the tallest of University of Sto. Tomas hitters but when she skies for an attack, expect it to be an explosive one.     BEAST MODE QUEEN No one who ever wore De La Salle University’s jersey had the same passion, tenacity, fierceness and swag as that of Aby Marano.         MISS EVERYTHING During her DLSU stint, Cha Cruz is known for her versatility having played in almost all positions head coach Ramil De Jesus wanted her to be in. Skills, talent, heart, leadership and beauty, Cruz has it all.      MISS EVERYWHERE DLSU’s Dawn Macandili is arguably the best floor defender during her days in the UAAP. She’s all over the court diving for the ball or setting up a good transition for an attack for the Lady Spikers off the serve.      THE NINJA Mel Gohing is one of the best liberos during the late 2000s and early 2010’s with her cat-like reflexes while manning the floor. The Season 71 Rookie of the Year won four titles for DLSU.      THE CLOSER (Photo: Karl Cedrick Basco, ABS-CBN News)  When you think about Aiza Maizo-Pontillas you can just imagine UST engaged in a long rally and leaning on this lefty to finish the play.   PAMAYWANG QUEEN Angge Tabaquero is UST’s standard when it comes to swag. She’s knows how to get into the Tigresses’ rivals’ heads with her signature hands-on-her-waist followed by a stare down after scoring a point.      PAGPAG QUEEN Maica Morada is one of Far Eastern University’s most dreaded attacker. Aside from her firepower she’s also known for her swag and her jersey-shaking antics.       QUEEN TAMARAW Rachel Anne Daquis is the undisputed Queen Tamaraw of FEU even after more than a decade since she delivered the school’s last UAAP title. Being the QUEEN, FEU had her jersey retired.     TAFT TOWER Mika Reyes is known as DLSU’s ‘Taft Tower’ for being a menace at the net.     NU TWIN TOWERS NU’s rise from the doldrums can be attributed to the arrival of the towering sisters Jaja Santiago and Dindin Santiago-Manabat.      MISS PHOTOGENIC Photographers are bewildered why Adamson University’s Jema Galanza seems to be always ready for the camera even while Adamson University is the middle of a battle. Photographers are sure get great shots of her all the time.   BAGYONG PABLO   Powerful, hardworking and relentless are the characteristics that best describe Myla Pablo during her time with NU.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 3rd, 2020

SEA Games: Really heartbreaking, really frustrating -- Valdez on bronze medal loss

Alyssa Valdez helplessly watched from the sidelines as Indonesia made a last stretch run to steal the bronze medal in the 30th Southeast Asian Games women’s volleyball competition. She couldn’t help but feel a sense of regret for not being on court in what could’ve been a chance to end a 14-year medal drought for the Philippines in the biennial meet.     “Nanghihinayang siyempre. When you’re outside, you can’t contribute anything,” said Valdez, who rode the bench in the fourth and fifth set of the Nationals’ 20-25, 26-24, 15-25, 25-20, 14-16, loss to Indonesia on Monday in the battle for bronze at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig City on Monday. But the hitter, who had 14 points, understood the decision of head coach Shaq Delos Santos to stick with the same line-up that forced the fifth set. After all, the Nationals went close to just a point away, 14-12, from claiming a spot in the podium since the 2005 edition of the regional sports meet with a rotation sans Valdez.   “It’s the decision of our coaches naman,” said Valdez. “Feeling ko mas nakikita nila kung ano yung mga kailangan ng team. So yun yung best decision na nangyari.” “Maganda rin naman hanggang dulo, lumaban din naman yung team,” Valdez added. But the bronze wasn’t meant for the Filipinas, who never got a chance to score again after Ces Molina’s match point off the block kill. “It’s heartbreaking. It’s really heartbreaking, really frustrating,” said Valdez. “But I think, sabi nga nila sa loob kanina, if it’s not for us, if it’s not our time, it’s not our time.” Setter Jia Morado just like Valdez played off the bench in the last four sets after starting in the first. She saw limited minutes in the fourth frame and was subbed out in the closing stretch of the deciding set. But she knew Delos Santos had a game plan in mind and those inside the court played their hearts out just like she would if she was there.   “Para sa akin, everyone naman is ready to play. Everyone is ready to step up,” said Morado. “So it's the coaches’ decision talaga kung sino ipapasok nila. Kami, kahit sinong ipasok or di kami gamitin, basta manalo para sa bayan, okay kami.” Meanwhile, Delos Santos stood by his decision. “Actually, yesterday, nag-usap na kami siyempre kung ano ang magiging diskarte ng coaches ire-respect. For us kasi, ako especially ako kasi ako ang naga-ano, di naman totally dahil hindi gagamitin or what pero yung timing, yun diskarte,” justified Delos Santos. “Siguro yung sitwasyon lang din na siyempre may nagi-step up din, merong ibang teammate niya na nagiging OK.” The second year mentor stuck with a rotation with middle Mika Reyes paired with Majoy Baron at the frontline, Ces Molina, Jovelyn Gonzaga and Eya Laure at the wings with veteran playmaker Rhea Dimaculangan and libero Dawn Macandili in the fourth frame that paid dividends. They carried the momentum up until the closing moments of the fifth frame when the Nationals went up, 12-8. But it didn’t end the way the Nationals wanted it to be. The medal drought extended for another year. Compounding the heartbreak was the fact that the Nationals lost all of their four games in the competition to finish fourth in a field of four - the worst finish for the Filipinas since their return in 2015 when the Nationals won one game in the Singapore edition and another one two years ago in Kuala Lumpur.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 9th, 2019

SEA Games: PHI volleybelles relegated to battle for bronze

The Philippines kissed its gold medal hopes goodbye as 11-time defending champion Thailand turned back the Filipinas, 25-16, 25-22, 34-32, Thursday night in the 30th Southeast Asian Games women’s volleyball competition at the jampacked PhilSports Arena in Pasig City. Even with the overwhelming odds against the finest team in the region, the Nationals, specifically team captain Aby Marano, stayed true to their promise to give the Thais a match to remember with a gallant stand until the bitter end as the Philippines saw its championship round bid go down the drain with its second straight defeat. Thailand set up a gold medal duel with Vietnam, the other unbeaten team after two outings, for a rematch of their 2015 Singapore edition championship battle. The Thais are now on its 15th straight gold medal match appearance Vietnam, which defeated Indonesia 20-25, 25-14, 19-25, 25-18, 15-6, in the curtain-raiser, and Thailand clash on Saturday in a preview of their gold medal clash. Alyssa Valdez, who scored five points in the closing stretch including the country's last of five set point advantages in the third set, finished with 14 points with 12 coming off attacks and added 12 digs while Mylene Paat had 11 points off eight kills and two kill blocks for the Philippines. Marano and Majoy Baron posted seven markers each for  the Nationals. “Sobrang nakaka-proud kasi like every huddle namin pinag-uusapan namin, ‘Maglaro lang kayo i-enjoy natin, give your 100 percent kasi wala naman mawawala eh.’ Yun nga pakiramdam namin eh,” said PHI coach Shaq Delos Santos. “Kung matatalo ka nakakalungkot pero yung pakiramdam namin na nakapag-perform kami ng napakaganda especially yung mga players grabe yung ginawa and then marami kaming napasayang tao, nakakatuwa kasi nakikita namin yung improvement every game." “’Yun din naman goal namin hanggang ma reach namin kung ano kaya namin this SEA Games,” he added. The Thais found the Nationals a tough nut to crack the whole match. The Filipinas breathed down Thailand's neck 17-21, in the third set after a Mylene Paat back-to-back hit and a Majoy Baron ace as the Nationals fought back from a 13-19 deficit. Maddie Madayag, Valdez and Jovelyn Gonzaga saved three match points to close in, 24-22, as Thailand called time. Valdez scored off a cross and Gonzaga forced a deuce before Thailand committed a line fault to give the Philippines the set point advantage. Veteran Wilavan Apinyapong stopped Thailand's bleeding with a down the line kill. An unsuccessful challenge by PHI head coach Shaq Delos Santos resulted on another Thai match point before Valdez knotted it at 26 with an off the block kill. Pimpichaya Kokram scored for Thailand but Valdez tied it again at 27. Kokram scored on the next play before Majoy Baron countered with a monster block for 28-28 count. Thailand committed an attack error before tying it again, 29-29. Mylene Paat got a kill block only to see Thailand force another deuce. Chatchu-on Moksri sent her service short but Thailand evened the set again at 31. Valdez hammered a kill for another PHI set point advantage, but Madayag crumbled under the pressure, overcooking her serve for a 32-32 tie. Kokram pounded a down the line hit before Wilavan sealed the edge-of-your-seat match with an off speed.                Kokram had 19 points with 17 coming off attacks while Apinyapong got 15 with all but one comin off kills for Thailand. The Thais looked poised for a walk in the park domination of the same squad they had been beating in the biennial meet since dethroning the Filipinas in 1995, in what turned out to be the start of their now-two and a half decade stranglehold of the crown, after taking a 21-9 advantage in the first set following an Alyssa Valdez attack error. Marano, who after losing to Vietnam in five sets vowed to give the Thais a memorable match on home soil, anchored an inspired rally to somehow close the gap, 16-23, on a kill block. But the Thais countered to extinguish the fight from the Filipinas. Fueled by the cheering home crowd, the Nationals sprung to life in the second set with libero Dawn Macandili providing one of the highlights as she dove head first to the stands trying to retrieve the ball to no avail.    Her effort fired up her teammates to give the Thais a scare with the Philippines taking what turned out to be its biggest lead in the duel, 13-10, capped by back-to-back hits by Majoy Baron. Then the Thais did what they do best. The Philippines will take on Indonesia, also winless in two games, on Saturday in a sneak peek of the bronze medal battle. The medal round is on Monday.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles        .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 5th, 2019

Philippine team continues to fine tune court chemisty

TOKYO --- The Philippine national women’s volleyball team continues to work on its chemistry inside the court. Pitted against a pair of Japan Division 2 club teams, the Nationals are slowly building their cohesiveness despite winning only one set in seven frames played in their tune-up games Saturday held at the Yamanashi Chuo Bank gym. The Filipinas again took a two-hour bus to get to Yamanashi, travelling along the mountain ranges on a cool and breezy morning to get to their host club’s gym, which gives a picturesque view of the snow-capped peak of the lovely Mount Fuji. But on court, the Nationals, who are now without Alyssa Valdez and setter Jia Morado after the duo returned to Manila Friday to fulfill their club duties, got a reality check against Yamanashi Chuo Bank and another visiting team, the Yamagata Prestige International Aranmare. The three teams played each other in alternating sets. Yamagata bested the Filipinas, 26-24, 25-22, 25-17, but the Nationals avoided a shutout with a tight fourth set win in its 19-25, 24-26, 23-25, 25-23, result over the Yamanashi Chuo Bank. “Magandang opportunity para sa amin na makalaro ang ganitong klase ng team,” said head coach Shaq Delos Santos of their third tune-up match date in the 12-day Japan training for the 30th Southeast Asian Games next month made possible by Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Inc. and the Philippine Sports Commission. Delos Santos, just like in their first two practice games, stressed the importance of being patient and sustaining their level of intensity.   “Kailangan naming i-improve ang patience ng team kapag naglalaro. Kasi hindi mo sila [Japanese teams] basta-basta mababagsakan ng bola,” he said. “Kailangan kapag umaatake ka at dumidiskarte ka tuluy-tuloy hangga’t di namamatay ang bola.” The Nationals were able to salvage a set win in a come-from-behind fashion. Down, 20-22, the Filipinas fought back against Yamanashi with a 4-1 closing run capped by Maddie Madayag’s block and a quick attack. Delos Santos rotated his lineup, trying different combinations in each frame played. The Nationals were able to take set point advantages against both their rivals in their early games but the Filipinas squandered both chances, something that Delos Santos wanted his team to address. “Nakakatuwa kasi ang score namin not naman sobrang layo, konti na lang, so parang pwedeng ipanalo. Pero yun ang isa pa sa kailangan naming i-improve yung sa end game namin,” he said. Against Yamanata, the Filipinas took a 24-23 advantage in the first set but a costly error allowed their rivals to steal the frame. The same happened in the second set against Yamanashi as Majoy Baron sent her serve long with the Philippines at set point advantage before the host club scored off back-to-back hits to take the frame. The Filipinas were able to keep up with the Japanese clubs in the succeeding sets with Baron, Mylene Paat, skipper Aby Marano, Madayag and reserve Roselyn Doria working hard at the net while Kalei Mau, Ces Molina, Eya Laure, Jovelyn Gonzaga and reserve Aiza Maizo-Pontillas contributed on offense. Kat Arado and Dawn Macandili manned the floor well and lone setter Rhea Dimaculangan playing in all sets. But it was the finishing kick that was lacking except for the last set. The Nationals travelled back to Sagamihara at around 6:00 p.m. and brought with them the lessons learned in their trip together with luscious green grapes – a well-known local produce – given to them by their gracious hosts. Up next for the squad is a tune-up game on Monday against Japan V. Premier League team Hitachi but on Sunday the team will take a little breather.   ---    Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 26th, 2019

Nationals brace for tough rematch against Vietnam

The Philippine national women’s volleyball team hopes to capitalize on its home court advantage and with Vietnam missing the services of its main scorer as the second leg of the ASEAN Grand Prix kicks off Friday at the Sta. Rosa Multi-purpose Sports Complex in Laguna. Carrying the momentum of its bronze medal finish in the first leg of the four-nation tournament in Nakhon Ratchasima in Thailand, the Filipinas will try to duplicate its conquest of the Vietnamese in their scheduled 3:00 p.m. showdown. The match will be available via iWant and livestream (Philippines only). Livestream abroad is available via TFC.tv. Team captain Aby Marano sees the support of the home crowd as a big morale boost for the squad seeking to surpass its finish in the opening leg.  “Oo, kasi ang sarap maglaro na may sumisigaw sa’yo eh. Iba kasi dun sa Thailand kaunti lang ang Pilipino. Iba kasi yung may sumisigaw, tinatawag ang pangalan mo kasi nakaka-add ng confidence and morale yun,” said Marano. The Nationals are also looking to exploit the absence Vietnamese top hitter Thi Thanh Thuy Tran, who is currently training with her club in the Japan V. Premier League, though the Filipinas themselves lost two key players.      “Sa tingin ko malaking bagay din yun pero kasi nawalan din kami ng players like Alohi (Robins-Hardy) and Kalei (Mau). For sure another challenging match for us,” Marano said. “We’re not taking it as wala si T4 magiging complacent kami, we’re gonna take it na mas ma-inspire kami to play our A-game.” Vietnam coach Tuan Kiet Nguyen knows that their rematch against the Philippines will be tougher.     “The Philippine team now improved a lot. We lost the match in Thailand two weeks ago, but in this tournament, we're still not confident because one of our players cannot play here,” he said. Replacing Mau, who suffered an Achilles injury, and Robins-Hardy, who had trouble securing a Philippine passport, are Grethcel Soltones and Jasmine Nabor.     Alyssa Valdez, who skipped the Thailand edition because of an ankle injury, will make her debut for the Nationals in the tournament that serves as test event for the country’s hosting of the 30th Southeast Asian Games. First leg Best Middle Blocker award winner Majoy Baron, skipper Aby Marano, Ces Molina, Mylene Paat, Roselyn Doria, Aiza Maizo-Pontillas, Kath Arado and Dawn Macandili are back for another tour of duty. Also making their return are Maddie Madayag, setter Jia Morado, Eya Laure and Jovelyn Gonzaga.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 3rd, 2019

Blaze Spikers escape HD Spikers in five

Sisi Rondina came up big to power Petron to a come-from-behind 17-25, 21-25, 25-11, 25-17, 15-10 win over Cignal in the 2019 Philippine Superliga All-Filipino Conference Thursday at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan. After missing their previous game against Generika-Ayala, Rondina went full blast as she lit the scoreboard with 23 kills, two blocks and ace off the bench to lift Petron to its eighth win in nine games. Remy Palma chipped in 12 points while Bernadeth Pons put up 10 markers and 22 digs as the Blaze Spikers avoided the upset ax of the HD Spikers after losing the first two sets. Petron stepped on the gas late in the fifth set for a 13-9 lead before Rondina delivered back-to-back hits to finish off the HD Spikers. Mylene Paat and Jovelyn Gonzaga tallied 17 points apiece while Rachel Anne Daquis had 12 markers for Cignal, which fell to 3-5 win-loss card. Meanwhile, F2 Logistics brushed off a rusty start before catching fire in the second set to massacre Sta. Lucia Realty, 25-22, 25-3, 25-12. With Kalei Mau anchoring the offense, the Cargo Movers turned a 10-19 deficit in the first set into a rout to remain flawless in eight games. Mau finished with 13 points while Ara Galang had 11 points and 15 digs and Majoy Baron asserted her might at the defensive end with five blocks for nine markers for the Cargo Movers. Dawn Macandili was also instrumental with 24 digs and seven excellent receptions for F2 Logistics, which committed only four errors in the entire ballgame. After trailing by nine, 10-19, F2 Logistics stepped on the gas and captured the first set at 25-22. Then, it was all Cargo Movers from there as they destroyed the sluggish Lady Realtors on both ends to finish the second set with 25-3 count – the biggest margin ever tallied in the six-year history of this tourney. Sta. Lucia’s three points in the second set came from an ace by Andrea Marzan, a successful challenge by head coach Babes Castillo and an attack from skipper Pam Lastimosa. Andrea Marzan and Roselle Baliton came through with eight and seven points, respectively,  for the Lady Realtors, whose lone win in nine matches came from rookie team Marinerang Pilipina.  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 18th, 2019

To get me prepared for the SEA Games -- Mau on her transfer

Filipino-American power-hitter Kalei Mau found a new home in F2 Logistics. The 6-foot-2 open spiker chose to join the Cargo Movers not only to help F2 Logistics reclaim the 2019 Philippine Superliga All-Filipino Conference crown but also to improve her game in time for the 30th Southeast Asian Games under the system of Ramil de Jesus.      “The reason why I chose F2 was mainly I thought about what team will benefit me as a player,” said Mau on Thursday in Day 2 of the national women’s volleyball team practice at the Arellano University Gym in Taft.   Mau transferred to the Cargo Movers after her former team United VC disbanded just days before the 2019 PSL AFC. F2 Logistics last won the AFC title back in 2016.  [Related story: Cargo Movers sign Kalei Mau] The hitter said that playing under De Jesus will benefit her for her first-ever stint for the tri-colors. “For a long time in UVC we didn’t really have a system that I was used to in playing overseas and playing back home in the States,” she said. “What I wanted to do is to try and find something close to my training level back in the States back to when I was playing in college just to really get me prepared for the SEA Games.” Playing for the F2 Logistics, Mau will be playing alongside national team teammates Aby Marano, libero Dawn Macandili and middle blocker Majoy Baron.   “I asked a lot of people what’s the best environment to put myself in if that’s my end goal. So I chose F2 not only because they have a good coach but also they have most of my teammates here in the national team,” said Mau. “The girls in the gym, they’re really holding me accountable.” The Hawaiian started to train with the Cargo Movers Thursday morning.     “The only thing that I would say is I would really want to spend a little more time connecting with my setters there, just because I know that a lot of Filipina setters they’re smaller,” said Mau. “A lot of the hitters here are also smaller. It might be a little hard to try to adjust but it’s not impossible.” Mau will need to adjust and make a connection with F2 Logistics setters Kim Fajardo, a former member of the national squad,  and Alex Cabanos. “What I like is high and faster sets to the pin. Something that a connection that me and Alohi (Robins-Hardy) like it was natural to,” said Mau. “But definitely, I’m excited to play with the setters that we have in our gym and see where it’s gonna take us.”   ---     Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 13th, 2019

WHAT IF Marck Espejo played for DLSU?

We all know what Marck Espejo brought to Ateneo when he donned the Blue Eagles jersey in the UAAP. He led the blue and white to three straight titles in five consecutive Finals appearances in indoor volleyball and captured Ateneo’s first and so far lone championship in beach volleyball. As a player, Espejo achieved a feat difficult to surpass if not replicate. A Rookie of the Year award, five straight Most Valuable Player honors aside from other individual accolades. The Marikina pride even registered the league’s most points in a game with 55 during his last tour of duty with the Blue Eagles in Season 80. Espejo’s impact left a lasting imprint not only to the Blue Eagles but also to the entire league. Arguably, his persona could even also be attributed to the renewed popularity of men’s volleyball in the country which for years failed to bask in the same limelight enjoyed by women’s play. Indeed, Ateneo found a precious gem in Espejo. But what if Espejo decided to take his talents to a different school? Let’s say, De La Salle University. After all the green and white was actually one of Espejo’s options heading into college. [Related story: DID YOU KNOW? Marck Espejo almost played for DLSU] If Espejo played for the Green Spikers, he would definitely be a game changer. The Ateneo-National University championship rivalry wouldn’t have happened. Instead, it would’ve been the Bulldogs and Green Spikers duking it out for the crown during Espejo’s UAAP stint.      “Kung sa amin siya naglaro panigurado malaki ‘yung impact sa team namin kasi alam naman natin si Marck malakas talaga siya kahit buong team kaya niyang dalhin,” former DLSU setter and now assistant coach Geuel Asia told ABS-CBN Sports. Asia, who played for the Green Spikers from Season 75 to Season 79, added that he’s very familiar with Espejo's game as they were teammates when the National Capital Region ruled the 2012 Palarong Pambansa in Lingayen, Pangasinan.       “So malakas ang impact niya sa DLSU kung sakali. Power and mind maglaro si Marck so malaki ang matutulong niya sa DLSU,” said the former national team playmaker and Espejo's Cignal HD Spikers teammate. "Fit din siya sa system. Kahit na anong sistema aayon sa kanya, magiging comfortable siya."  In fact, with him on board DLSU in Season 76, the Green Spikers might have even gotten a trip to the Final Four. The Green Spikers, who finished third n Season 75, were eliminated by Adamson University in the playoff for no. 4 spot the following season.  Imagine Espejo adding more firepower to DLSU, which already had Season 75 MVP Red Christensen, Raymark Woo, Aaron Calderon, Ralph Calasin and Philip Cerveza. “Sobrang lakas talaga kung nangyari ‘yung ganun. Kasi yun din time na yun malakas si Woo eh,” said Asia. With Espejo, who was second in scoring in his rookie year and was in the top 10 in spiking, blocking, service and digs, DLSU might not even need to go to the playoff for a semis spot. Heck, the Green Spikers might even land at no. 2 - just like how Espejo led Ateneo into the Finals in Season 76 to face NU – considering that Christensen, Woo and Cerveza that year were consistently producing big numbers and contributing well on defense.      Of course, that team would still find it difficult to surpass the powerhouse Peter Torres-led Bulldogs in the championship. But at least that would’ve given DLSU the much-needed championship experience. Let’s say Woo didn’t suffer a knee injury during the pre-season while playing in a ligang labas that forced him to sit out  year, then DLSU would have remained a solid contender in Season 77. There might even have been the possibility that the Green Spikers ended a decade-long title-drought that year as they would have been parading an experienced and solid lineup composed of Espejo, Woo, setters Brendon Santos and Asia, libero Jopet Movido, Calderon, Christensen, Mike Frey, Arjay Onia, Cris Dumago and Calasin. The possibility of DLSU winning another title or two in the next three seasons with Espejo at the helm might not be far from reality.    But then of course Season 80 would be a different story. That year the Green Spikers would’ve parted ways with most of its veterans leaving Espejo, Onia, Dumago and Frey leading a young team piloted by third year setter Wayne Marco.    Even if DLSU did manage to crawl its way back into the Finals in Espejo’s last year, it would be extremely difficult to hurdle the Bulldogs parading a tall and very talented crew led by ace hitter Bryan Bagunas, Kim Malabunga, Madzlan Gampong, James Natividad, Francis Saura, setter Kim Dayandante and libero Ricky Marcos.    But then again, a DLSU squad bannered by Espejo in the UAAP would have definitely been a sight to behold. Too bad we could only imagine the what ifs.   ---    Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 19th, 2020

DLSU s volleyball program continuously evolves under De Jesus

From Iris Ortega-Patrona to legendary star Manilla Santos-Ng to Aby Marano, Ara Galang, Mika Reyes, Michele Gumabao, Majoy Baron and Kim Dy to the current crop of players in Jolina Dela Cruz to Thea Gagate, much can be said about the successful women’s volleyball program of De La Salle University. But it won’t be complete without mentioning the name of head coach Ramil de Jesus, who turned a struggling team into a perennial title contender for the past two decades. Eleven championships in 18 Finals appearances since taking the post as mentor of the Lady Spikers in 1997 with an impressive winning record, De Jesus truly is the genius behind DLSU’s powerhouse status. But what really put De Jesus a cut above the rest, Santos-Ng said, is his ability to adapt, utilize the pieces he has on hand and the way his system evolves. “The evolution of DLSU volleyball lies not only from the great players, but mainly because of the way Coach Ramil adjusts and adapts on the current situation,” said Santos-Ng in an interview on Volleyball DNA. She mentioned that during her time, De Jesus focused on making DLSU a powerhitting team. When the likes of Marano and Gumabao came, the mentor concentrated on making the Lady Spikers the strongest team in terms of blocking. The batch of Dy, Kim Fajardo, Baron and libero Dawn Macandili was known for its all-around play. What brought DLSU its success is the fact that De Jesus was quick to adapt to situations.    Of course, glory didn’t come overnight. It took De Jesus a lot of work to bring the Lady Spikers on top. De Jesus delivered DLSU’s first title in Season 62 in the Lady Spikers' second attempt at the crown. The Taft-based squad managed to advance to the Finals the next three seasons but fell short at the hands of Far Eastern University each time.   “Nu’ng pumunta ako ng La Salle, sa pagkakaalam ko hindi pa kami malakas na team eh,” said Santos-Ng “So talagang si Coach Ramil dahan-dahan n’ya talagang winorkout ang mga players and the program,” she added. “Dun mo makikita na si Coach Ramil talaga is very dedicated and committed kapag mayroon siyang goal.” After three bridesmaid finishes, DLSU, on Santos-Ng’s second year, exacted revenge on FEU to get back to the throne. DLSU won two more times for its first of three three-peats. Santos-Ng said that De Jesus during that time made his players stay in a dorm for the first time not only to monitor their conditioning but to develop a deeper team chemistry. “‘Yung time na yun gusto nya kaming maging well-bonded. Di lang strong team but well-bonded,” said Santos-Ng. “Kasi you can easily create a strong team eh. Pagsasamahin mo mga malalakas na players from this school. But strong team plus well-bonded team makes a big difference.” The ChocoMucho hitter also added that De Jesus will always look for ways to the unleash the full potential of his players. “Si Coach Ramil hindi siya nauubusan ng idea kung paano kami palakasin. Kung ano ang nakikita niya sa player na kulang talagang magpo-focus siya dun. Di siya magdya-jump kaagad sa ibang gagawin. May pagka-perfectionist siya eh,” she said. Like all of De Jesus’ players Santos-Ng had her share of rough moments while training under his watchful eyes. “Umiiyak din ako sa kanya. Pero makikita mo at the end of the day ‘yung result ng team kung paano kami gumalaw as one sa loob ng court,” she said. De Jesus according to Santos-Ng is also very strict when it comes to discipline.     “Coach Ramil is very consistent on how he manages to protect ‘yung mga players. Ayaw niyang nawawala sa focus,” said Santos-Ng. “Lagi niyang sinasabi na, Hindi ito modeling, hindi ito para magpaganda o magpa-cute. Volleyball itong pinasok nyo.’” “He always reminds us para lang talaga hindi kami mawala dun sa focus na maglaro lang talaga kami ng volleyball,” she added. More than a decade since Santos-Ng finished her tour of duty for the green and white, the Lady Spikers continue to evolve and keep up with the times yet maintain their consistency as one of the finest volleyball program in the collegiate ranks. All thanks to De Jesus.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 28th, 2020

Former and current Lady Spikers reunite in online fund-raiser

De La Salle University alumnae gave encouraging words for the current crop of Lady Spikers in their virtual reunion Sunday night in the Kada-Uno Lasalyano fundraiser for families affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Led by DLSU legends Michele Gumabao, Aby Marano, Ara Galang, Kim Fajardo, Mika Reyes and Dawn Macandili, the Lady Spikers came together for an online fan meet and greet, games and a question and answer session in the six-hour program aimed at raising funds for over 1,000 families. In the cancelled UAAP Season 82, the Lady Spikers showed much promise in their lone match as they defeated archrival and defending champion Ateneo De Manila University in four sets. Rookies Leila Cruz and Thea Gagate as well as sophomore Jolina Dela Cruz, Michelle Cobb and seniors Tin Tiamzon and Aduke Ogunsanya made their intentions clear of reclaiming the throne they lost last year. Unfortunately, the tournament was cut short because of the contagion. Still the Lady Spikers’ performance impressed those who came before them. “Super proud. Nakita naming sila kung papaano mag-training,” said Fajardo, who three titles for the Ramil De Jesus-mentored squad. Macandilli, who was a catalyst on defense for the DLSU’s third three-peat batch from Season 78-80, gave an advice to the current Lady Spikers.       "Lahat ng tao may masasabi sa team ninyo. Maku-compare at maku-compare ang team ninyo sa previous teams ng La Salle. Ang advice ko lang sa inyo ay mag-focus kayo sa kung ano meron sa team ninyo. Huwag kayo maghahanap ng iba na wala naman. Yun naman ang laging sinasabi ni coach,” said Macandili in the video conference which included rookies Jus Jazareno, Ali Borabo, Fifi Sharma, Juls Coronel, Matet Espina, Cruz and Gagate.   “Nasa inyo lahat ng answers, you just have to find it for yourselves," added Macandili. “Sa side ko naman as an audience, wag kayong panghinaan ng loob,” said Reyes. “Ngayon very challenging talaga ito for us kasi very uncertain ang future. Let’s enjoy this moment muna and i-appreciate natin ang mga dumadating na blessings sa atin.” Galang, who came back from a career-threatening knee injury to help the Lady Spikers reclaim the crown in 2016, remains upbeat that her alma mater will make it back on top. "Excited talaga ako sa Season 82 kasi nakakasama natin sila sa training. Nakikita natin ‘yung pag-improve nila. Sayang kasi di nila ma-showcase. Alam kong dadating ‘yung time na ma-share nila talent nila. Keep working hard, magtiwala sa sarili at magtiwala sa kasama ninyo," said Galang. The event, which also featured performances from Gary Valenciano, Barbie Almabis and Jett Pangan, raised P4,009,241.59. (Watch the event here)  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 25th, 2020

Rondina reaping the fruits of her hard work

Sisi Rondina had a memorable and inspiring 2019. Capping a banner year by helping the Philippines to its first Southeast Asian Games women's beach volleyball podium finish since 2005, Rondina will be feted as Ms. Volleyball in the SMC-Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA) Annual Awards Night on March 6. Not only that, Rondina is also a 37th SMB-SAC All-Cebu Sports Awardee, where she will receive the award on Feb. 29 in Cebu City.  A native of Compostela, Cebu, the 23-year-old Rondina, who is now with the newly-formed Creamline beach volleyball club, joins the ranks of Alyssa Valdez, Aby Marano, Mika Reyes, Dawn Macandili and Jaja Santiago who were previously bestowed with the prestigious PSA honor. "For me, blessed sobra di ko naman din po inakala na ganito po ang ibabalik sa akin. Minahal ko lang talaga mga committments ko and syempre putting efforts sa lahat ng mga ginagawa ko lalo sa paglalaro po," said Rondina.  Prior to winning the SEA Games bronze medal, Rondina joined forces with her long-time partner Bernadeth Pons in steering the Philippines to a quarterfinals finish in the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour 1-Star Boracay Open last May. In the same month, Rondina was scintillating in the taraflex floor, winning MVP honors for University of Santo Tomas, and leading the Tigresses to their first UAAP women's volleyball finals appearance in eight years. In her last season on the sand courts, Rondina paired with Babylove Barbon to cement UST's status as the most successful women's beach volleyball program while claiming her fourth MVP plum. Rondina takes pride of her roots in Cebu. "Wow, people are treating me like that po pero di ko iniisip yang mga ganyan kasi everyone can be a pride of their town but thankful kasi isa ako sa mga nabiyayaan," said Rondina.  "Sana in some way maging tool ito to inspire young ones and syempre for those player na katulad ko kahit ano ka pa sino ka man pag may pangarap ka walang imposible," she added. Together with Pons, Dzi Gervacio and Dij Rodriguez, Rondina spearheaded the country’s beach volleyball campaign in the SEA Games. Rondina didn't fail the adoring fans who trooped the Subic Tennis Courts by ending the Philippines’ 14-year medal drought in the sport. As Rondina is trying to continue to grow the game of beach volleyball locally and internationally, she is determined to inspire further young and aspiring players, especially those from the province. "Ako honestly, didnt expect na ganitong biyaya ang binigay saken pero ang alam ko pinagdadasal ko lahat para sa pamilya ko at para sa mga taong naniniwala sa akin. Actually para saken wala lang to kasi ang mas timbang sa akin kung ano yung mga behind ng awards ko mga tulong at mga napasaya ko or sa amin yun ang nag ma-matter sa akin," said Rondina.  "And siyempre huwag na wag nilang kalimutan ang nasa Itaas, disiplina sa sarili at wag na wag makalimot sa mga taong tumulong sayo. Lastly huwag na huwag susuko sa mga pangarap na minimithi. Kahit sino at ano ka pa maging totoo ka lang at maipakita mo kung ano ang kaya mong gawin yun na yun," she added......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 15th, 2020

Mau out of SEA Games roster, Maizo-Pontillas gets spot

The Philippine national women’s volleyball team’s podium finish bid suffered a major blow after power-hitting Filipino-American Kalei Mau was ruled ineligible to see action in the 30th Southeast Asian Games. In a shocking development, Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Inc. (LVPI) president Joey Romasanta revealed Friday that the 6-foot-2 open spiker was scratched from the lineup after falling short of the required minimum two-year residency. Mau, a University of Arizona standout in the US NCAA Division 1, came to the Philippines late last year and played for Cocolife in the Philippine Superliga before transferring to F2 Logistics where she won the All-Filipino Conference Most Valuable Player award and led the Cargo Movers to the throne. She was called up for the national team and made a big impact for the squad. Mau helped the Nationals finish third in the ASEAN Grand Prix first leg, as the Filipinas shocked a then-complete Vietnam squad, forced Indonesia to a five-setter, and stole a set from powerhouse Thailand – the same teams that will vie for medals in the SEA Games. Mau sat out the second leg in Sta. Rosa, Laguna because of an Achilles’ heel injury but was able to join the team in its 12-day Japan training recently. Although Mau has been campaigning in the country, she remains affiliated under the United States Volleyball Association (USVA). Based on the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) and the Asian Volleyball Confederation, a player who wishes to represent her country in an international competition such as the SEA Games, Asian Games and the Olympics must be under her mother federation for at least two years. LVPI had no other choice but to cut Mau from the roster to abide the Asian and world body’s rule.      “We don’t want to jeopardize whatever problem she may encounter along the way. She could get suspended if she plays without securing transfer papers from the federation,” said Romasanta. “I don’t know why she failed to submit the papers, but it really has to be her submitting it because she is a member. It's not the LVPI.” The Nationals actually learned about this issue weeks back during their Japan training camp and tried to look for solutions in case Mau won’t get the greenlight to play.   Bite the bullet The news of Mau ineligible to play added to the heartbreak that the Nationals have faced during the course of their build up for the SEA Games, which will open its volleyball competition on Dec. 2 at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig City. “Malaking pagsubok na naman sa amin kasi adjustment na naman dun sa team,” said head coach Shaq Delos Santos. The Nationals already lost towering sisters Jaja Santiago and Dindin Manabat as well as Filipino-American playmaker Alohi Robins-Hardy. The Six-foot-5 Santiago and 6-foot-2 Manabat failed to secure their release from their respective clubs in the Japan Premier League while Robins-Hardy had trouble securing a Philippine passport on time. Some players suffered injuries including hitter Alyssa Valdez (foot), who skipped the team’s Thailand training camp and the ASEAN Grand Prix opening leg while Mika Reyes is still recovering from a knee injury. The squad had to continue their Japan training camp without Valdez and setter Jia Morado, who had to return to Manila after just five days into the camp because of their club commitment with Creamline in the Premier Volleyball League.    “Simula ng mag-start kami ng [training] camp nandyan siya [Mau] tapos nagkaroon na naman ng conflict,” said Delos Santos, who is in his second year as mentor of the squad. “Siguro best thing na magagawa ng buong team, coaches, players, ng management, ng LVPI, kami kailangan din naming ma-accept na, na matanggap namin sa sarili namin na kakayanin namin kahit na maraming dumadating na problema o conflict kasi yun na rin naman ang goal natin dito kung paano buuin ang team.”   Maizo-Pontillas returns, Paat in dual role With Mau out, Delos Santos has elevated reserve Aiza Maizo-Pontillas into the team. The lefty Maizo-Pontillas, who played for the national team in the 2017 edition of the SEA Games in Malaysia, will be Mau’s replacement. She was with the team in its Thailand and Japan training camps.  Delos Santos is also looking at putting Mylene Paat in a dual role as opposite and open spiker with Maizo-Pontillas taking the main position at opposite. “Si Aiza na ang ilalagay namin [for Mau]. Si Mylene kasi inaano namin, pero kasi sa Pilipinas nagagawa niyang maging outside hitter,” said Delos Santos. “Pero kailangan mas maaral pa niya o maibigay namin yung mga role n’ya as an outside hitter pero kasi siyempre iba pa rin ang galaw dun”. “Pero I think konting adjustment na lang so ibibigay namin yung kailangan niyang i-improve at i-develop,” he added. Anticipating the worst, Delos Santos during their Japan training was already giving Paat some extra workouts in both wing positions as well as working on her floor defense.  “Magiging dalawa ang puwesto n’ya in case na kailanganin namin siya sa outside. Pero may tatlo pa naman tayong outside hitters. Depende yan sa ilalaro at sa diskarte naming gagawin, dun na lang yun tatakbo,” said Delos Santos. Even without Mau, the Nationals remain competitive with a solid core bannered by team captain Aby Maraño, Valdez, Morado, Reyes, Paat, Maizo-Pontillas, Dawn Macandili, Majoy Baron, Rhea Dimaculangan, Maddie Madayag, Jovelyn Gonzaga, Kath Arado. Eya Laure and Ces Molina.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 8th, 2019

Garoppolo throws 4 TD passes, 49ers beat Cardinals 28-25

By David Brandt, Associated Press GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — San Francisco's game-manager turned into quite the game-changer in an impressive performance. Jimmy Garoppolo threw for 317 yards and four touchdowns on a night his team's vaunted defense wasn't at its best, and the San Francisco 49ers reached the halfway point of their season undefeated, beating the Arizona Cardinals 28-25 on Thursday. For a quarterback who often gets the backhanded compliment of being a good game-manager, Garoppolo's stellar performance provided some proof that the 27-year-old might be a little better than people think. His teammates already knew. "Yeah, he's pretty good," San Francisco 49ers tight end George Kittle said. "I don't know why people don't think he is. He makes some pretty gutsy throws out there, doesn't he? Goodness gracious." San Francisco (8-0) fell behind 7-0 but responded with three touchdowns — one as time expired in the second quarter after Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury called a timeout and gave the 49ers a second chance on fourth down — to take a 21-7 halftime lead. The 49ers were in control until about five minutes left in the fourth quarter, when Andy Isabella caught a short pass and sprinted for an 88-yard touchdown to help the Cardinals pull to 28-25. But the 49ers were able to run out the clock on their ensuing offensive drive to end Arizona's comeback. Garoppolo had two crucial third-down completions to keep the final drive alive, including one to Emmanuel Sanders who caught seven passes for 112 yards and a touchdown. Garoppolo completed 28 of 37 throws including touchdowns of 30, 7, 1 and 21 yards. "Our team has done a good job of winning in different ways this year," Garoppolo said. "Whether it's offense, special teams, defense or mixing and matching all of them. That's how you create a good football team. You're not relying on one part and everyone's playing tomorrow. Complimentary football. "That's where we're at right now." Even in victory and at 8-0, Niners cornerback Richard Sherman was downright grumpy when asked about the defense. Arizona had 357 total yards. "It's not about the results. The results are going to be what they are," Sherman said. "Thank goodness our offense executed. But it's about the process, it's executing the way you're supposed to. It's about doing your job repeatedly, like with robotic consistency." Arizona (3-5-1) lost its second straight game. Rookie quarterback Kyler Murray threw for 241 yards and two touchdowns. The Cardinals came into the game without their top two running backs, David Johnson and Chase Edmonds, who were battling injuries. Kenyan Drake — who was acquired by the Cardinals on Monday in a trade with the Miami Dolphins — ran for 36 yards on the first play of the game and capped the opening drive with a 4-yard touchdown run. He finished with a team-high 110 yards rushing and 52 yards receiving. "That's what we expected from him, why we traded for him," Kingsbury said. "His skill set is perfect for what we do. He's explosive, he runs tough and to come and learn an entirely new offense, we didn't hold anything back. We knew we could call our best game." BAD TIMING Arizona looked as if was about to escape the first half trailing 14-7 after San Francisco's Jeff Wilson Jr. was stopped on fourth down just shy of the goal line with a few seconds remaining in the first half. But there was one major problem for the Cardinals: Kingsbury called a timeout just before the play began. The 49ers converted on their second chance when Garoppolo hit Sanders for a 1-yard touchdown pass and a 21-7 lead. Kingsbury said he was trying to get a "Kodak" snapshot of what the 49ers were trying to do. "Obviously looking back on it we would have rather gotten that stop," Kingsbury said. "It just didn't work out for us this time." ROAD WARRIORS San Francisco's off to an 8-0 start for the second time in franchise history. The Niners won 10 straight games to start the 1990 season. This year's streak has included five road wins. The 49ers have three straight home games starting with the Seahawks on Nov. 11. KITTLE SCARE The 49ers got a scare early when star tight end George Kittle left the game after taking a helmet to the knee. But the third-year star quickly returned and responded with a 30-yard touchdown catch late in the first quarter to tie it at 7. INJURIES 49ers: Defensive lineman Arik Armstead left in the first quarter with a throat injury but returned to the game. ... Linebacker Kwon Alexander had a chest injury in the second half and didn't return. Cardinals: Defensive lineman Clinton McDonald left with what the team called a "stinger" in the third quarter. UP NEXT San Francisco returns home to face Seattle on Nov. 11 for a Monday night game. Arizona travels to Tampa Bay on Nov. 10......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 1st, 2019

Valdez banners SEA Games women’s volleyball roster

Alyssa Valdez is set to make her third straight Southeast Asian Games stint as she banners the Philippine national women’s volleyball team in the biennial meet that the country will host next month. The power-hitter and crowd-drawer will carry the nation’s pride alongside a good mix of new and returning players with the mission of ending a 14-year podium drought. Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Inc. bared the lineup Wednesday. Aside from Valdez, skipper Aby Marano, setter Rhea Dimaculangan, who skipped last year's Jakarta-Palembang Asian Games,  and Jovelyn Gonzaga are also suiting up for the tricolors for the third time since the country’s return in the regional sports meet in 2015 in Singapore. The Philippines’ last podium finish was back in 2005 Manila edition when the Filipinas led by Tina Salak and Ging Balse finished third. Also making it to the 14-woman roster of head coach Shaq delos Santos are setter Jia Morado, middle blockers Mika Reyes, Majoy Baron, who won back-to-back Best Middle Blockers in the ASEAN Grand Prix, Maddie Madayag, wingers Ces Molina, Eya Laure, Mylene Paat and Fil-American Kalei Mau and liberos Dawn Macandili, the ASEAN GP second leg Best Libero, and Kath Arado. Cut from the team are middle Roselyn Doria, setter Jasmin Nabor and open spiker Grethcel Soltones, who all played in the ASEAN GP second leg last weekend in Sta. Rosa, Laguna.   Action in the volleyball competition will begin on Nov. 28 at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig City.     ---          Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 9th, 2019

2019 ASEAN Grand Prix: Lahat ng itinuro ni coach Ramil inaalala lang namin -- Best Libero winner Dawn Macandili

STA. ROSA, Laguna --- Majoy Baron and Dawn Macandili snatched a pair of individual awards for the Philippines in the 2019 ASEAN Grand Prix second leg. Baron bagged her second straight Best Middle Blocker recognition while Macandili was named Best Libero during the awards ceremony Sunday at the end of the four-nation tournament at the Sta. Rosa Multi-purpose Gym here. The two awardees gave the Philippines added hardware following another bronze medal finish. Showing their defensive brilliance in their respective spots during their campaign, the duo gave credit to the system of their former De La Salle University head coach and current F2 Logistics mentor Ramil De Jesus, whose training and guidance made them into vital cogs defensively for the National team.      “Siyempre ‘yung foundation nandoon and lahat ng itinuro ni coach Ramil sa amin inaalala lang din namin,” said Macandili, who two years ago bagged the AVC Asian Women’s Seniors Volleyball Championship 2nd Best Libero award. “Siyempre sa bagong coach namin ina-absorb din namin. Open kami sa criticisms and sa mga bagong itinuturo ni coach Shaq (Delos Santos) sa amin.” The five-foot wonder from Batangas and former Philippine Superliga Most Valuable Player averaged 5.4 excellent digs per set and contributed well on reception. Baron, a former UAAP MVP, averaged 6.7 points and had a total of seven kill blocks in three matches. “For me, parang deja vu. Nangyari ulit kung ano yung nangyari sa Thailand,” said Baron. “Siyempre, super happy pa rin na na-recognize yung effort.” She added that the awards were just a bonus for the Philippines and that the most important thing was that they gained valuable lessons that they’ll carry into the 30th Southeast Asian Games in Manila next month.     “For me, as long as natuto kami as a team and nakikita naman na may improvement,” said Baron. “So kailangan pa namin mag-training as a team para mas ma-improve pa namin yung mga naging lapses... para mas maging cohesive pa kami as a team.” Other individual award winners were MVP Pleumjit Thinkaow and Pimpichaya Kokram (Best Spiker) of champion Thailand and Tri Retno Mutiara (Best Setter) and Ratri Wulandari (Best Server) of runner-up Indonesia.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 6th, 2019

Nationals face Indonesia in ASEAN Grand Prix opener

National team head coach Shaq Delos Santos has high hopes for his squad as it marches into action against Indonesia in the inaugural ASEAN Grand Prix on Friday at the Terminal 21 Mall in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand. Despite only a couple of weeks of preparation and missing a key player, the mentor believes that his team is ready to take on the Indonesians in their scheduled 3:00 p.m. match (Manila time). The Filipinas are coming off a 12-day training camp in Bangkok that saw the squad play a series of tune-up games including the Thai national team and Japan V. Premier League club Toraay Arrows. “We learned a lot from the training camp, every match we felt that we are getting better,” said Delos Santos, whose squad is also preparing for the 30th Southeast Asian Games in Manila in November. “Conditioning-wise and skills-wise we are good.” The Nationals have been training twice a day during the training camp and have been working on their chemistry but Delos Santos admits that the squad might be at a disadvantage especially with the team just playing together for a short time. Only 10 players from the 14-woman squad have completed the training camp with Maddie Madayag, setter Jia Morado, Jovelyn Gonzaga and Eya Laure joining the squad just last Sunday as they are all playing in the ongoing Premier Volleyball League. Top hitter and veteran national team member Alyssa Valdez skipped the training and the tournament to rest after injuring her right ankle just days before her scheduled flight to Thailand. “So we need to make quick adjustments,” said Delos Santos. “But these are mostly veteran players they can make do with what’s given. We will do our best under the circumstance.” Carrying the country’s fight are Kalei Mau, Ces Molina, Aiza Maizo-Pontillas, Mylene Paat, team captain Aby Marano, Majoy Baron, Roselyn Doria, Madayag, Laure, Gonzaga, liberos Dawn Macandili and Kath Arado and setters Morado and Alohi Robins-Hardy. The Nationals will face Thailand on Saturday and Vietnam on Sunday. The Philippines will host the second leg of the Grand Prix on Oct. 4-6 in Sta. Rosa, Laguna......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 19th, 2019

Valdez injures ankle, will miss Thailand training camp

Creamline’s Alyssa Valdez will not join the national team in its Thailand training camp after sustaining an ankle injury. A source monitoring the development confirmed that the three-time Premier Volleyball League Most Valuable Player went down with an injury just two days before her supposed flight on Sunday to join the bulk of the Nationals already in Thailand training for the inaugural ASEAN Grand Prix on September 20 in Nakhon Ratchasima. Valdez’s injury was posted in Rebisco Pilipinas Volleyball Team Instagram on Friday night. The national team veteran will undergo therapy.         View this post on Instagram                   Let's give our love and all-out support to our Phenom Alyssa Valdez who injured her ankle. Because of this, she won't be able to train in Thailand as she was advised to undergo physical therapy. As she recovers over the next few days, ituloy lang natin ang suporta para sa #RebiscoPilipinas Women’s National Volleyball Team sa kanilang laban para sa bayan! #Sambansa #AlyssaValdez #Phenom #getwellsoon #LabanPilipinas A post shared by Rebisco Pilipinas (@rebiscosambansa) on Sep 13, 2019 at 4:21am PDT Valdez is expected to rest for a few days. Unbeaten defending champion Creamline will open the PVL Season 3 Open Conference second round on Saturday. With Valdez out, the national team is now down to only 14 players after Motolite setter Iris Tolenada failed to get the green light from her club to join the Nationals. Only Creamline setter Jia Morado, Jovelyn Gonzaga of PacificTown Army, ChocoMucho's Maddie Madayag and Eya Laure of University of Sto. Tomas will accompany assistant coach Kungfu Reyes on Sunday to Thailand.       Already in Thailand are skipper Aby Marano, Fil-American spiker Kalei Mau, Alohi Robins-Hardy, Aiza Maizo-Pontillas, Mylene Paat, Majoy Baron, Ces Molina, Roselyn Doria, Dawn Macandili and Kath Arado......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 13th, 2019

PHI spikers produce better showing in THA U-23 rematch

The Philippine national women’s volleyball team had a better showing on Wednesday as the Filipinas won two of the four sets they played against Thailand's U-23 squad. Playing in their third straight tune-up game, the Pinay spikers eked out a 24-26, 26-24, 25-16, 20-25, result over the host team, which requested to only play four sets. The 10-woman squad is halfway through its scheduled series of friendlies in the 12-day training camp which serves as part of the team’s buildup for the inaugural ASEAN Grand Prix in Nakhon Ratchasima starting on Sept. 20 and for the 30th Southeast Asian Game in Manila in November. The Nationals lost to THA U-23 team, 25-22, 25-22, 23-25, 17-25, 13-15, on Monday and only won one set against the powerhouse Thailand senior squad, 12-25, 19-25, 12-25, 21-25, 15-9, on Tuesday.      The Nationals, composed of skipper Aby Marano, Fil-American spiker Kalei Mau, Alohi Robins-Hardy, Aiza Maizo-Pontillas, Mylene Paat, Majoy Baron, Ces Molina, Roselyn Doria, Dawn Macandili and Kath Arado, will play Bangkok University on Thursday. After taking on Bangkok U, the Filipinas will have a two-day break before taking on Japan's V-League runner-up Toray Arrows on Sunday where they will be joined by the remaining members of the 15-woman team in Alyssa Valdez, Jia Morado, Maddie Madayag, Eya Laure and Jovelyn Gonzaga......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 11th, 2019