They were together on a daily basis due to games and trainings, but not even Adamson star spiker Jema Galanza knew up until the last minute of Sherwin Meneses’s plans of leaving his post as head coach.
Meneses tendered his resignation as head honcho of the Lady Falcons Thursday, leaving the San Marcelino belles dumbfounded when they heard the news.
“Sobrang emotional pa rin kaming lahat. Hindi pa kami naka-move on sa nangyari,” said Galanza after the Lady Falcons played their 1st game in 4 seasons without Meneses at the helm.
Before the decision was made public, the erstwhile coach, who spent 17 years with the institution, bid his goodbye to his seniors after a tuneup match held at San Beda College.
“Sinabi sa aming mga seniors, nagmemeeting pa lang kami parang alam ko na sasabihin niya. Natulala na lang ako na parang di pa kami maka-move on sa sinabi niya,” she narrated.
After getting exposure training in Thailand, expectations for Adamson to perform better than its 7th place finish in Season 77 skyrocketed coming into its 2016 campaign.
This did not materialize right away, however, as the Lady Falcons failed to find their groove, dropping 6 out of their 9 outings so far.
“Siguro meron (signs of Meneses leaving the team) pero di ko iniisip kasi gusto ko nandyan lang si coach sa amin. Gusto naming may mapatunayan pa ng kasama siya,” said Galanza.
The Laguna native looked up to Meneses as a caring mentor and a father who nurtured her for 3 years, turning her into one of the best spikers in the collegiate ranks today.
“Para siyang tatay ko kasi hindi kami masyadong nag-uusap pero ako pinapakiramdaman ko siya at alam ko kung ano iniisip niya sa akin,” described Gallanza.
“Talagang tutukan ka niya, sobrang maintindihin ni coach tsaka ipapagtanggol ka niya,” she added.
On what she will miss most now that her father figure has chosen to let go of his post, she says, ”’Yung maririnig mo sa kanya yung, ‘Kaya mo yan. Matapang kang bata.’ Bilib pala siya sa akin kahit nada-down ako.”
Though they are still adjusting to the system of interim coach Domeng Custodio, Galanza and the rest of the team vows to fight in their remaining games for the honor of their former mentor.
“Kahit wala si coach kailangan namin lumaban. Lahat ng laban namin para kay coach,” she closed. — By Jason Mercene