Unless Ateneo head coach Tai Bundit has other plans, Kim Gequillana is expected to start Sunday at the Mall of Asia Arena against arch rival La Salle as an opposite spiker for their second-round encounter in Season 78.
This is a rotation that has been utilized in the Lady Eagles’ last few outings as part of the adjustment to fill the void left by Maddie Madayag, having Amy Ahomiro move back to the middle blocker position.
Naturally, Gequillana feels the pressure of having to deliver in order to avenge her team’s 1st loss of the season.
“Of course medyo pressured din kasi I have to fill in a huge gap sa team. I feel like marami rin expectations not only from my teammates but also from my coach,” shared the spiker, who has been an reliable bench player for the defending champs.
“I guess I have to step up talaga for that game,” she added.
Aside from the much-needed offense she can contribute, Gequillana’s floor defense would also be a welcome development for Ateneo as they go up against one of the best serving teams in the league.
On the daunting task up ahead, the La Salle-Zobel alumna says, “Siyempre konting tiyaga talaga during training (ang kailangan). Sabi nga ni coach Tai gagawa kami ng goal na mag extra effort talaga to be able to perform very well.”
Despite not being one of the taller and the higher leaping spikers in the roster, Gequillana has proven her wares, delivering the points whenever Bundit calls her for duty.
According to her, even she gets surprised sometimes with the way she scores against even the tallest of blockers she goes up against.
“Actually, nagugulat rin talaga kasi ako. Probably bagong player pa lang ako so hindi pa talaga na-prepare ng other teams how I play,” she humbly said.
“I guess one of the factors talaga is galing ako sa bench so ‘yung mindset ko is gusto ko maka-puntos talaga para makatulong ako sa team ko,” added the UAAP champion. — By Arylle Magtalas