As Ateneo crumbled in front of more than 16, 000 people at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Saturday, Jia Morado admitted not all of them were mentally ready to handle such pressure.
“Medyo naunahan lang kami ng nerves,” the star setter said after the Lady Eagles absorbed a disheartening 22-25, 14-25, 18-25 defeat — their 1st since March 8, 2014.
“I think La Salle really prepared for us,” she added. “Siyempre yung iba sa amin kulang pa sa experience sa ganitong klaseng game, na ganito kalaki yung crowd, na ganito yung level ng kalaban namin.”
The back-to-back defending champions never got into a rhythm, no thanks to their spotty reception and the myriad of errors they committed.
“I tried not to get frustrated. Siyempre hindi maiiwasan minsan, pero I try to do with what’s given to me,” Morado said. “I tried my best to remain composed. Everyone tried to remain composed kahit na nalalamangan na kami. Hindi kami pwede mataranta lalo na ganyang klaseng kalaban.”
Now without the pressure of maintaining a long winning streak, Morado isn’t worried about life after the shocking defeat.
“Hindi naman kami down about the loss,” she said. “Bawi kaagad next game. We’re looking at it positively,” she closed. — By Arylle Magtalas