Two of the many outstanding rookies who debuted in the UAAP Season 78 women’s volleyball tournament are La Salle’s Tin Tiamzon and May Luna.
At this early stage of their collegiate careers, the freshmen already have their own sets of fans who cheer them on when they are inside the court and feel bad when they are not.
Being both outside hitters, only one of the two can see action while the other has to be at the bench patiently waiting for a possible substitution.
Admittedly, there is a competition going on between the two spikers, says the Fil-Canadian Tiamzon.
“Yes, there is a friendly competition between us in a way na we push each other,” she told FOX Sports.
“We support each other a lot. Kung maganda ‘yung game namin, talagang happy kami para sa isa’t isa. We celebrate each other’s victories,” added Tiamzon. “We also catch each other when we feel defeated. Or kung bad mood, kami talagang dalawa ang nagpi-pick-up sa isa’t isa.”
Having found a friend thousands of miles away from home, the duo vowed to go at it with nothing in mind but what is best for the team.
On who should start opposite fellow outside hitter Ara Galang, Tiamzon shares, “Si coach na talaga ang nagde-decide who will start. Basta kami ni May, we try our best for the team, for each other and for ourselves.”
Though she is yet to break into the top 10 best scorers and spikers in the league, Tiamzon has inched her way into the best servers’ list, ranking 10th with 0.41 aces per set.
She may have impressed PH volleyball aficionados but an acid test is coming her way this weekend when the battle of the titans between Ateneo and La Salle happens at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum
“I’m excited and good kind of nervous,” she said wide-eyed.
“I’m nervous na gusto ko talagang maipakita what I can do for the team, the Lasallian community and for coach para maipakita ko sa kanya na lahat ng turo niya sa akin, na-apply ko,” she added.
Aware of the intensity of the rivalry, Tiamzon hopes to bring a positive nergy for the Lady Spikers when they battle the defending champions for a chance to tie the Lady Eagles at the top spot.
“I watch Philippine volleyball a little bit when I was still in Canada. I know the Ateneo-La Salle rivalry is big,” she shared. “What I know about it is madaming tao. Heavy crowd talaga. Tsaka palaging intense ‘yung rivalry between the two teams.”
On what she can bring to the table, she adds, “My undying spirit is what I can bring to the table. Kung anuman ‘yung score, I will always cheer for the team regardless of the outcome.”
Thrust into the big stage after the residency rule was scrapped, the rookie will now have to go head to head against some of the most powerful spikers in the league most notable of which is the reigning MVP Alyssa Valdez.
To this, she says, “I know her and she is very good. A lot of people say she’s a world-class player. Sabi nga ng madaming tao phenom siya and she is.”
“I’m looking forward to playing,” Tiamzon closed. — By Mac Dionisio