Alyssa fires up Nationals

Alyssa Valdez serves as the inspiration of the national women’s volleyball team in the ongoing Asian Volleyball Confederation Cup for Women.

Jema Galanza said they are dedicating their inspired performance to Valdez, the Creamline skipper who failed to join the squad after contracting dengue.

The Nationals are making a strong statement in this prestigious continental event.

After back-to-back setbacks, they booked a masterful four-set win over Iran before registering a 25-18, 25-13, 25-17 victory over South Korea on Thursday at the Philsports Arena.

With that, the Nationals finished third in Pool A heading into the quarterfinals.

The Philippines is facing Southeast Asian powerhouse Thailand in the quarterfinals today at 8 p.m.

“One of our inspirations in playing was Ate Ly (Valdez), hoping that watching us play makes her stronger,” said Galanza, who fired 21 points to lead the Filipinas against a young Korean squad.

“Plus, it’s just great playing alongside the Creamline family.”

National coach Sherwin Meneses hopes the team will be able to beat Thailand, similar to what the men’s squad did when it shocked the Thais in the semifinals of the 30th Southeast Asian Games in 2019.

“Hopefully, we will be able to get a win over Thailand but we know how strong they are. But the ball is round. The men’s team managed to beat the Thais and hopefully the women’s team can do it too,” said Meneses, who was an assistant coach to the fabled national men’s squad.

“It’s a different feeling coaching the women’s team from the men’s team. I was an assistant in the men’s team while I’m the head coach in the women’s team. I’m happy I got to experience coaching both sides.”

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