ATENEO veterans Jhoanna Maraguinot and Bea de Leon remained optimistic despite the Lady Eagles starting off their UAAP Season 80 campaign with back-to-back losses.
Coming from a sorry loss to Far Eastern University in the season-opener, Ateneo still could not get back on its feet as National University relied on Jaja Santiago and Jasmin Nabor to deny the Lady Eagles, 25-19, 25-19, 20-25, 12-25, 15-7, on Wednesday at The Arena in San Juan.
Still, for Maraguinot and de Leon, the 0-2 start - its worst under Tai Bundit era - is not as bad as it seems.
“Parang it's still okay. Because five sets 'yung both loss namin. In a sense, we didn't give up pa 'rin, lumaban pa 'rin, kinakapos lang sa dulo,” said the Alitagtag, Batangas native.
“At this point, we just have to believe in each other and my teammates. Wala, it's a loss, but we're not out,” added de Leon.
But the two were straightforward in pointing out the team’s glaring weakness with its reception.
“No naman (I’m not frustrated). As I said, medyo expected nga kasi bago libero, less receives, and they aren't the best also. I mean, we have to be realistic. You really can't give it all to me, in that sense,” said de Leon.
“One thing din siguro us bago 'yung liberos namin. Marami sa amin, matagal na with the team pero 'yung liberos namin bago pa kasi,” added Maraguinot.