THE Adamson Lady Falcons dedicated their first win in UAAP Season 81 women’s volleyball tournament to their demoted coach Airess Padda.
After the unexpected takeover of new head coach Onyok Getigan last Friday, the Lady Falcons finally broke out of a three-game skid, taking down National University in straight sets, 25-15, 25-19, 25-22, on Sunday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Bern Flora, who was hailed as player of the game after finishing with 15 points off 13 attacks and a pair of blocks to go with eight digs, expressed her gratitude to Padda during her TV interview.
Entering the post-match interview at the press room, Flora admitted that the demotion of the American mentor into conditioning coach, who didn’t attend their Sunday’s match, hurt the whole team.
“Masakit, sobra, siyempre po three years kaming nag-sama ni Coach Air,” the do-it-all spiker said. “Sabi ni coach Air na umangat kaming mga ate, mas kailangan kami ng mga babies namin.“
Eli Soyud, who was also instrumental with 12 points in Adamson’s first win in four matches, agreed saying that they turned the dramatic changes in their team into a motivation.
“Yung nawala si Coach Air, parang yun na rin yun, kumuha na rin kami ng lakas sa nangyari,” Soyud said. “Kasi sabi niya, kailangan lang namin maging isa talaga. And, kay coach Onyok, okay naman yung kinalabasan ng lahat.”
Graduating middle blocker Joy Dacoron shared that they were shocked when the management decided to replace Padda during their training.
“Nagulat din kami kasi training day namin yun, na pinatawag lang kami ng management,” Dacoron said. “After noong kinausap kami, nagulat kaming lahat kinausap din kami, pinatawag si Coach Air. After kausapin si Coach Air, kinausap din kami ni Coach Air. Pumunta kami sa isang room, doon lahat emotional, lalo na ako.“
It wasn’t the first time that it happened to Adamson as in Season 78, former coach Sherwin Meneses resigned in the middle of the season and was replaced by men’s coach Domingo Custodio.
Dacoron is just keeping her faith on the management’s decision and she promises that the Lady Falcons will continue to work hard to rise from the ashes this season now that they finally earned a breakthrough win.
“Pero ang management, hindi naman agad-agad yan magde-decide na hindi ikakabuti, or hindi rin namin alam kung ano't puno't dulo noon,” Dacoron said. “Pero we still, ang goal namin talaga is to make Adamson proud, lalo na yung goal ngayon na hindi babalik yung dati na talunan ang Adamson, lalaban at lalaban talaga for school pride.”