ATENEO head coach Oliver Almadro is holding out hope, but taking precaution on Deanna Wong’s health for UAAP Season 82 women’s volleyball tournament.
Two weeks away from the opener of UAAP volleyball, Wong is likely to miss this year for the Lady Eagles as she is still nursing a stress fracture on her right shin.
“With her injury, we don’t want to force her to be in tiptop shape right away so we’re praying for her. She still has one more year,” said Almadro after the Lady Eagles’ night practice on Monday at the Blue Eagle Gym.
“Ayaw ko yung pwede na, basta when they say ‘Coach pwede na,’ No. If its one hundred percent it will be okay but if it’s not I don’t want to force because her health and her career (are) at stake,” he added.
Almadro admitted that Wong was already dealing with the pain on her right leg since last year.
“Actually last year, when I came in meron na yun she just endured the pain para lang maachieve niya yung gusto nya maachieve last year,” the Ateneo coach said. “As you can see naman last year she started slow then nagpeak na lang siya towards the end.”
“Slowly (recovering), ayaw namin madaliin e. Nagkikita naman kami. Nagpupunta siya dito. Deanna naman fighter yan. Soon she will be there,” he added.
Though Wong is unlikely to suit up, the Lady Eagles still have two talented playmakers in sophomore Jaja Maraguinot and returning player Jamie Lavitoria, who had a great stint as Generika-Ayala’s setter.
“Si Jaja marami na rin siyang natutunan kay Deanna last year, si Jamie naman ganun din nagbibigay na rin siya ng experiences niya with her experience sa pro-league. So malaking factor yun for us,” Almadro said.
“Sabi ko naman one person will not determine the whole team, it’s about the team no matter what kung sino nandyan sa loob. Basta as long as you’ll be enthusiastic and love what you’re doing and do what is right all the time.”