Generika-Ayala head coach Sherwin Meneses is hoping that the management would retain their core for next season after accomplishing a sweet bronze medal finish in the Philippine Superliga All-Filipino Conference.
The Lifesavers earned their best finish since the franchise returned to the league in 2016 as they took down Cignal in three sets, 25-12, 30-28, 25-13, in the battle for third place on Saturday at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
After steering the franchise with a bronze medal that shone like gold in his first year, Meneses is hoping that he will have the same core next year bannered by Angeli Araneta, Patty Orendain, Fiola Ceballos, Ria Meneses, Mika Lopez, setter April Hingpit and libero Kath Arado, who all showed vast improvement this PSL season.
“Sinabi ko naman bago ako pumasok dito kung maretain lahat, mas maganda,” he said. “Silang lahat magiimprove pa siguro naexperience na namin yung semis.”
“Yung game nandoon na eh, yung chemistry nila, mas okay,” he added.
The Generika-Ayala coach added that he wants to focus more on retaining his wards than recruiting other players.
“Sabi ko sa management na kapag magpalit tayo nang magpalit, bago lang din nang bago,” he said. “So mas maganda ‘yung naging response ng management sa amin.“
After settling for quarterfinals finishes in the Grand Prix and Invitational conferences, the Lifesavers had a great conference finishing at third place with a 6-4 win-loss record in the preliminary round before knocking out Smart in the quarters to earn their first semifinals appearance.
Generika-Ayala pushed F2 Logistics to the limits in the semifinals forcing a five-set thriller only to succumb in the deciding set before beating Cignal for a bronze medal.
After a convincing year, Meneses believes that if they will have the same core next year, they could make it to the finals.
“Sabi ko nga sa kanila mga two years siguro pwede kami makapasok sa Finals,” he said. “Siguro sa 2019, hindi ko naman sinasabi (na magfinals agad), malaki chance kasi yung chemistry nandiyan tsaka yung training nila.”