JAJA Santiago and Jasmine Nabor’s "mother-daughter relationship" has worked well for National University.
Their off-court chemistry has translated to on-court success as ‘nanay’ Santiago found a perfect match in her ‘anak’ Nabor to lead the Lady Bulldogs in turning back Ateneo, 19-25, 25-18, 25-22, 21-25, 15-4, to sweep the Shakey’s V-League Collegiate Conference finals at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig City on Wednesday.
“Kaya po siguro, ganoon ang tandem namin kasi since first year high school nandito na po ako sa Manila and parang nanay-nanayan ko na siya,” said the incoming second year Nabor, who was named Finals MVP.
“Siguro po kaya ganoon kasi parang nandoon ang love namin sa isa’t isa and kilala na namin ‘yung bawat isa,” she added.
For the 6-foot-5 NU middle blocker, she could not ask for more from Nabor, whom Santiago thinks is bound for stardom.
“Actually noong high school ko pa naging setter si Nabor kaya masasabi ko talaga na simula noong high school talaga, nagkakakuhaan na talaga kami sa set. Sa tingin ko, siya na talaga,” said Santiago, who bagged the MVP and 1st middle blocker awards.
“Kapag nandyan siya, wala na akong hinahanap na iba eh. Jasmin Nabor is Jasmin Nabor. Sobrang bow ako sa batang ‘yan,” she added.
Their tandem also works for matters beyond the volleyball. The Tarlac-native Nabor would always run to Santiago whenever she’s having personal problems.
“Kapag may problema ako, sa kanya ako nag-o-open, humihingi ako ng advice, tapos kapag sa training, parang kung ano ‘yung kailangan niya fino-focus ko doon para pagdating ng laro hindi po kami mahirapan,” said Nabor.
Proof of their tight chemistry happened while reporters were asking questions to Nabor during the post-game interview. Santiago had to excuse herself to have her photo taken with some of the fans.
“‘Nak, dito muna ako,” whispered Santiago to Nabor before she left.