‘UAAP is a community first before competition’
MANILA, Philippines—Sports may create competitors but it’s also the field of utmost respect and communal presence within athletes.
Ateneo president Fr. Jose Ramon “Jett” Villarin, S.J. said during Ateneo’s bonfire celebration that there may be fierce competition and rivalries in the UAAP but at the end of the day, the league is a one big community.
Villarin said he came to the realization when he saw Ateneo middle blocker Maddie Madayag doing cartwheels with University of Santo Tomas captain Cherry Rondina after the end of the UAAP Season 81 women’s volleyball finals.
“I didn’t saw the volleyball and soccer games live but when I watched a few YouTube clips later I saw a video of Sisi Rondina doing a cartwheel with Maddie and I thought that the UAAP is a community first before it’s a competition,” said Villarin Friday at Ateneo de Manila University.
Rondina and Maddayag celebrated with each other after the Lady Eagles beat the Golden Tigresses in Game 3 of the women’s volleyball finals, 25-17, 25-22, 25-22, a week ago.
Despite the differing atmospheres of the two teams, Ateneo in absolute euphoria from winning the title while UST in sorrow, the players from both teams celebrated the feat in a show of class and sportsmanship.
Villarin added that every athlete needs a rival for those are the people who push everyone to be at their best.
“We need our rivals to better ourselves, we need competitors so we can go beyond ourselves,” said Villarin. “We need passion and transcendence and that is going beyond ourselves, that’s a gift.”
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