AMERICAN import Tai Bierria says she has no problem coming off the bench as long as her team gets the wins.
The outside hitter has been taken off the Cignal starting lineup in the PVL Reinforced Conference but still went on to carry the HD Spikers to big wins, including a 2-0 record in the semifinals while averaging 21 points.
Against Creamline, the HD Spikers dropped the first set but went on to win in four. In the previous outing, against Chery, the HD Spikers won an extended opening set and took the match in three.
Before the semifinals, Cignal also had a faltering start against Choco Mucho before winning the next three sets.
"Me being a competitor, I wanna be on the floor 24/7, but it's been working. You know what I mean? So you kinda got to put your pride aside, and come in and do your job whenever," Bierria said, who matched her conference-high 21 points on 17 attacks, three blocks and an ace against Creamline on Sunday.
"We've been winning, so I tell Coach Shaq 'I trust you' every single time he tells me I'm not gonna be in the game for the starting six."
The HD Spikers look to complete a playoffs sweep when they face Petro Gazz on Tuesday at PhilSports Arena.
Bierria said her teammates have been helping her embrace her new role.
"I just try to go out there and do my thing. I think having a team like the team that I have makes it really easy to do my job" she said.
"Where I mess up, they pick me up. My weaknesses are their strengths. So my performance, really, is an indication of the teamwork that we have and the chemistry that we all share."
Head coach Shaq Delos Santos says he believes in Bierria's ability to deliver whenever she is subbed in.
"Hindi naman namin kailangan itago pa kung ano 'yung nagiging diskarte. Siguro, 'yung timing lang, paano namin siya gagawin. Knowing Tai, nagpe-perform talaga mabuti," he said.
"Nakakaproud. Ang laki rin ng naging [improvement]niya. Naging maganda 'yung performance niya. Nag-iba talaga simula noong pumasok din sa semifinals."