Alyssa Valdez motivates Lady Eagles after dispiriting straight-sets loss
The Lady Eagles hope to play more consistent volleyball after failing to hold on to early leads in the series opener. Jerome Ascano

ALYSSA Valdez may be the three-time UAAP women’s volleyball MVP, but there’s one thing that challenges her coming to the Game Two of the best-of-three Finals of the Season 78.

The graduating Ateneo star, who has been in the championship in each of her five years in college, feels the need to motivate, if not carry, the entire team on her shoulder as they try to live for one more day against back-to-back finals victim La Salle.

“Ako as a player, after five years in the finals, (it’s really a challenge) how to come back if we lose,” she said. “How will I motivate my teammates is also challenge din talaga for me. Every year, every championship, it’s a different story.”

The 22-year old Queen Eagle from San Juan, Batangas knows the pressure is on their side.

“Tonight pa lang kami manonood (ng Game One replay), during the game it's really, we're always up except for the third set. In any finals game it’s really hard to close the game, siguro dun kami nahirapan,” she said.

“Someone’s gonna win, someone’s gonna lose, we’re really sad we lost the game. It’s really a challenge for us to come back,” she added.

[See Valdez vows Ateneo will come out with the 'strongest heart' in Game Two]

In the series opener, Valdez singlehandedly carried the Lady Eagles with 17 points, anchored on 15 attacks.

“Kailangan kahit andun ka na (sa finals) kailangan push mo pa ang sarili mo and tulung-tulong kaming teammates, nila coach na maging one this coming Wednesday,” she said.

Game Two is set at 4 p.m. at the MOA Arena.

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