In the previous UAAP seasons, the recruitment was put on hiatus and the teams were compelled to tinker on their line up. This was due to the sudden changes in the Philippines’ education system (K-12) that halted the introduction of these budding volleyball stars.
But now they have arrived.
With the extra two years of experience in senior high school, here are some of the rookies expected to bolster the action of the most competitive collegiate volleyball league in the country.
Trisha Genesis – Adamson University
One aspect that Adamson University improved upon signing American head coach Airess Padda is their recruitment game. Not really known for landing highly touted recruits, the signing of Trisha Genesis from Holy Rosary College in Laguna is arguably one of the best for Adamson in recent memory. The former Palarong Pambansa superstar has shown glimpses of her championship experience as she has been instrumental on clinching the third place finish of the squad in the second season of the Premier Volleyball League (PVL) Collegiate Conference. While she is expected to ride the season playing under the shadows of veteran wingers Bern Flora and Chiara Permentilla, she could easily substitute for one spot should the potent wingers of the Lady Falcons underperform.
Vanessa Gandler – Ateneo de Manila University
The Lady Eagles might have lost veteran opposite spiker Mich Morente to the Lady Spikers, but they have acquired the services of De La Salle Zobel high school standout Vanie Gandler. The 5’9 Lady Eagle has arrived just in time as the Lady Eagles are in need of a reliable open spiker due to the sudden departure of Jho Maraguinot. Gandler powered the Lady Eagles to a bridesmaid finish in the recently concluded PVL Open Conference. Gandler will surely bank on her 6.9 points per match performance in the PVL once she is faced with the formidable spikers of the opposing teams.
Jolina Dela Cruz – De La Salle University
Serious in keeping the volleyball trophy on Taft, De La Salle University acquired a good catch in the person of Central Luzon top spiker Jolina Dela Cruz. With her 5-foot-9 frame and her stellar floor defense, one would easily consider Dela Cruz as a prototype wing spiker compatible with Ramil De Jesus’s program. Her addition to the bench and roster of the champion team strengthens the Lady Spikers’ bid in keeping the volleyball championship trophy in their lair.
Lycha Ebon – Far Eastern University
The Lady Tamaraws will march on to the UAAP wars with a highly depleted lineup. Losing ace spiker Bernadeth Pons to graduation, they will also have to campaign without starting opposite spiker, Toni Rose Basas, with no confirmed reason. To survive the season, the Morayta squad must look on the silver lining of their off-season performances in the form of rookie wing spiker, Lycha Ebon. The Davao native who had the guts to wear Pons’ #2 jersey emerged as the top scorer for the Lady Tamaraws during their Philippine SuperLiga Collegiate Grand Slam stint.
Graphics and featured image by Roc Verdera.
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