STAR player Alyssa Valdez was honest enough to take the blame for Ateneo’s loss to Philippine Air Force in their do-or-die encounter for the last semifinals berth of the Shakey's V-League Season 11 Open Conference.
The Air Spikers made short work of the Lady Eagles, 25-20, 25-22, 25-22, in their Tuesday showdown at The Arena in San Juan.
Despite suffering from on-and-off fever, the Ateneo spiker still came away with 18 points, 15 from spikes and three service aces, although far from her usual numbers of 27.8 points per game during the Lady Eagles’ five-game sweep of the quarterfinals that earned them a playoff for the remaining semis slot.
The reigning UAAP MVP however, isn’t making any excuses.
“May fever ako on-and-off, pero ok naman na. 'Yun nga lang sumuka ako right before the game kaya 'ayun sumama ulit pakiramdam ko,” said Valdez, whose eyes were swollen and had to immediately wear a jacket after the match.
“I feel bad kasi, feeling ko ako ang one of the reasons bakit marami kaming errors,” she said.
“Hindi ko na-compose 'yung sarili ko sa mga calls against sa amin and 'yun naka-apekto na sa laro ng team,” she added as the Lady Eagles gave away 34 points to Air Force off their miscues.
The Ateneo skipper however, remained positive her young team will learn something out of its experience in the tournament.
The Lady Eagles bested older and experienced opponents such as three-time Philippine Super Liga titlist Philippine Army ( 25-19, 19-25, 21-25, 25-21, 16-14,), PLDT Home Telpad, (25-18, 25-21, 25-26) and defending champion Cagayan Valley (17-25, 25-23, 27-25, 25-19).
“Growing up team kami eh, and the best way to learn is from experience,” she said. “Veterans lahat eh, iba ang composure nila and 'yun ang isa sa mga dahilan kung bakit kami sumali dito para matuto kami sa kanila.”