SKIPPER Alexander Guevarra and University of Santo Tomas are raising the bar after a surprise runner-up finish in last year's UAAP Cheerdance Competition.
Unlike last year when the Salinggawi Dance Troupe surprised a lot of people with a performance that relived the school's glory days, Guevarra said the school will have a target on its back on Saturday at the Mall of Asia Arena.
“Parang medyo mainit ‘yung mata ng mga tao sa Salinggawi kasi malaki ‘yung expectations [dahil] nag-place last year,” said Guevarra.
“Pero, ako, parati kong sinasabi sa sarili ko and sa teammates ko na dapat gamitin namin ‘yung pressure na ‘yun para mag-translate into positive energy,” he added.
UST has not won a cheerdance championship in 12 years but showed signs of a resurgence by finishing second behind Adamson last season.
Coach Mark Chaiwalla is optimistic a championship is within reach.
“We would always be hungry to deliver better and of course to get the championship,” he said.“Sinasabi ko nga, as long as ma-hit lang nila ‘yung routine, hindi malayong makuha namin ‘yung ninth championship."
Silver medalist in his first year as coach, Chaiwalla is embracing the pressure of living up to expectations of the popular dance troupe, which still holds the longest winning streak of five after NU fell short of the title last year.
“I think the pressure would always be there kasi it’s Salinggawi eh,” he said. “I think Salinggawi has proven it’s name already sa history in the field cheerdance."
“(So) we need to stick to the image of who Salinggawi really is so that’s where the pressure comes from,” he added.
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