PERFORMING in front of packed crowds for the better part of the past four years, Sam Corrales admitted that it would be a little weird watching the University of the Philippines Pep Squad from afar.
"It's gonna be different," said the University of the Philippines' courtside reporter.
Corrales will still be in her UP uniform come the UAAP Cheerdance Competition on Saturday at Mall of Asia Arena, albeit in a different capacity as she'll be tasked to be the main booster for her former team.
But for the 21-year-old journalism major, her new role doesn't diminish her being a part of the UP Pep Squad family.
"I still feel like I'm still part of the family which is UP Pep. I'm still supporting them all the way, different perspective lang. I always go to their trainings pa rin and it makes me feel like I never left," she said.
Corrales experienced both the highs and the lows during her time in the group.
She was there when UP Pep made it to the podium in her first two years in Diliman, as well as when they chose to skip the 2016 competitions and last year's sixth-place finish, which is still the lowest the crew hasranked in the contest.
That was then.
Corrales has no doubt the eight-time UAAP Cheerdance champions have put those nightmares behind them as UP Pep is motivated to reclaim its lost glory.
"I don't think the motivation ever left. We always want to go back at the top," she said. "We've been dominating the podium for ilang years and we just want to continue the legacy. I think they're in good hands with the coaches and the seniors and I'm sure they're doing a good job leading up."
Asked how high she thinks UP will finish in this year's competitions, Corrales refused to give anything away.
"Abangan na lang nila," she said with a smile.