MANILA – De La Salle Lady Spikers’ assistant coach Noel Orcullo heaved a sigh of relief when head coach Ramil de Jesus finally decided to call the shots on Saturday at the Philsports Arena.
Orcullo, who steered the Lady Spikers to an undefeated first round campaign at 7-0, revealed that he was overwhelmed to see De Jesus returning to the team when they faced the defending champions NU Lady Bulldogs.
The long-time assistant coach of DLSU admitted that he was doubting himself if he could fill in the shoes left by RDJ as the chief tactician of the perennial favorites Lady Spikers.
“Sobrang overwhelmed ako kasi andyan na siya. Yung lagi kong inaalala pag maglalaro na yung duda sa sarili kakayanin ko ba? Ngayon andyan siya,” Orcullo said.
He also shared some of their funny conversation the night before the game when De Jesus was asked if he would finally attend the game.
Skipper Mars Alba also tried to convince the multi-titled coach to finally show up in their games – which appeared to be fruitful.
“Sabi sa amin ni coach Ramil, ‘tanungin nyo si Noel baka nage-enjoy pa siya.’ Sabi ko, ‘coach hindi, ikaw ang kailangan ko.’ Ayun sobrang tuwang-tuwa din ako. To think kagabi pa nangungulit na si Marione, ‘si Coach Ramil pupunta?’ Sabi ko ikaw ang kumumbinse kay coach Ramil para pumunta bukas,” Orcullo continued.
Even his players were elated to finally see De Jesus on the sidelines with Angel Canino and Jolina dela Cruz dedicating the victory to him.
Indeed, it was an added motivation for the Lady Spikers as they cruised to a 26-24, 26-24, 25-16 victory over the Lady Bulldogs to repeat from their Wednesday straight-sets win.
It also extended their perfect run to 8-0 while pushing NU down to third spot with UST Tigresses at 5-3.
De Jesus architected all the 11 UAAP titles of La Salle in women’s volleyball, including three "three-peats."
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