Ang pag-join naming sa PVL parang gauge namin kung saan na kami ngayon — Arellano U head coach Obet Javier
Losing almost half of their championship core, Arellano University head coach Obet Javier will bank heavily on a handful of veterans led by Jovielyn Prado.
The road for the Lady Chiefs build up to retain its NCAA title starts with their participation in the inaugural Premier Volleyball League Collegiate Conference.
Arellano U faces a tough challenge in the tournament that serves as a preview of the teams that will compete in two of the country’s most important collegiate leagues.
The Lady Chiefs are bracketed in Group B in the opening round with UAAP teams University of the Philippines and Adamson University, NCAA rivals Lyceum of the Philippines University and College of St. Benilde and Technological Institute of the Philippines.
Javier finds his group as a good testing ground for his team, which is on a rebuilding stage after the departure of six key pillars in their championship run including Rialen Sante, liberos Eunice Galang and Jonalyn Ibiza and Erica Calixto.
“Ang pag-join naming sa PVL parang gauge namin kung saan na kami ngayon,” said Javier, who also steered AU to the NCAA throne back in 2015. “Bago ang set ng team ko ngayon pero hindi naman kami nagpapabaya.
Aside from contending for the PVL crown, Javier wants to develop the maturity of his team as Arellano aims for the biggest prize – back-to-back NCAA titles.
“Bata ang team namin kaya malaking tulong para sa amin itong PVL. Gagawin namin itong gauge kung nasaan na kami talaga at ano ang kailangan naming i-improve para pagdating sa NCAA maganda ang ipakita ng Arellano,” he said.
“Ang hinahanap ko ay ang maturity ng mga bata. Kapag pumasok na ang maturity ang tapang lalabas na ‘yun e,” Javier added. “Gusto ko na makita sa kanila na kahit sino ang makatapat kahit pa UAAP team ‘yan ay mabibigyan namin sila ng magandang laban.”
Powering the Lady Chief aside from Prado are key returnees Andrea Marzan, Anne Esguerra and Regine Arocha, who all played under the Power Smashers banner during the Reinforced and Open Conferences.
Faye Anne Marie Flores will have a large shoe to fill as the team’s libero while Rhea Ramirez and Necole Ebuen are also expected to deliver as starters.
The Lady Chiefs open their campaign with an early collision with another NCAA title-contender CSB on Saturday in the tournament’s curtain-raiser at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan.
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