NU Pep Squad stays positive as shaky start sends five-peat seeking team crashing out of top three
NU Pep Squad fell out of the top three for the first time in five years. Marlo Cueto

DETHRONED champion National University Pep Squad accepted its fate wholeheartedly after dropping to the fourth place in the UAAP Season 80 Cheerdance Competition on Saturday at the MOA Arena.

NU Pep Squad coach Ghicka Bernabe disclosed she was still hopeful that they can make it to the top three despite a couple of unsuccessful lifts and incomplete pyramid at the start of the performance.

Bernabe’s was even more optimistic as they pulled off a flawless run with effortless tosses and stunts in the rest of the routine after a faulty start.

“Noong sa first part ng routine na medyo may mga nalaglag, medyo kinabahan talaga ako,” she said. “Still nagkaroon ako ng chance and hope na we’re still part of the top three.”

“Kasi first part lang naman ang may laglag, it’s just three or four stunts but aside from that flawless naman ang routine naming sa 60% onwards,” she added.

But when the announcement of winners came, NU Pep Squad was nowhere in the top three.

“Ngayon siguro hindi pa totally nagsi-sink in sa akin, siguro later,” she said. “I’m praying na maging malaki ang effect nito sa amin (na bumangon).”

“Ayaw kong maapektuhan ang mga bata because I know na magaling ang mga players ko. Kung mayroon man sanang maapektuhan, sana kami na lang na mga coaches. I still believe in the capability of my players,” she added.

Bernabe, however, congratulated Adamson Pep Squad, which copped its first title since the competition started in 1994, and second runner up University of the East, which reached the podium for the first time in 15 years.

“I’m very happy sa Adamson kasi para silang NU, from third to champion. And I’m happy for UE kasi from matagal na wala (sa top three) nakapasok sa podium,” she said.

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