JASCKIN Babol is ready to fill in the big shoes of multi-awarded libero Kath Arado as she eyes to create her own mark for University of the East in UAAP Season 82.
Arado graduated as one of the most successful players of UE, winning last year’s Best Libero, two-time Best Digger, Season 80’s Best Libero and a former Rookie of the Year, in her five UAAP seasons.
That’s a big shoes to fill in for the 19-year-old Babol as the Lady Red Warriors seek to continue their vast improvement through the years.
“Malaking challenge sa akin yung pagpalit sa position ni Ate Kath kasi mas mabigat bigat po yun, medyo pressure sa akin,” said the sophomore libero. “Nilulook forward ko na maging solid yung team namin na maglaro.”
But Arado and UE head coach Karl Dimaculangan have been grooming the Iligan City native to take a bigger role from being a seldom-used rookie last year.
“Kung wala siyang training sa Generika or sa national team, pumupunta po siya rito and tinuturuan po kami sa mga drills na nakukuha nya dun and ina-apply din namin dito,” Babol shared Arado’s advices.
“Tungkol halos lahat sa games, sa mga dapat ginagawa mo. Dapat maging alerto ka, wag maging tamad at dapat kung ano yung pinapagawa sayo ng coaches dapat ginagawa mo,” she added.
Although a player like Arado is irreplaceable, Dimaculangan is also confident that her heir apparent is going to prove her worth and provide good floor defense.
“Sabi ni coach wag lang talaga akong ma-pressure sa position ko sa court kasi mabigat din,” Babol said. “Sabi niya sa akin na, ‘Wag mong isipin na pressure si Kath sa’yo. I-challenge mo lang ang sarili mo na gawin mo ang best mo, gawin mo ang laro mo.”
Babol is bucking down the pressure of her big role to fill in as she focuses more on raising UE’s profile in volleyball.
“Siguro last season, meron kaming malakas pero pag buo parang kulang ng bonding. Kulang po ang pagiging solid ng team,” Babol said. “Yung ngayon po bini-build namin ang pagiging solid ng team inside and outside. And then gusto po naming magbagon ang mindset ng tao pag sinabing UE.”