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5 years later, collegiate volleyball stars hope to fulfill unspoken promise

By: - Reporter / @BLozadaINQ
/ 05:30 AM January 25, 2020

University of the East’s Seth Rodriguez—INQUIRER PHOTO

They came into the UAAP five years ago filled with promise and potential. There was hope that Seth Rodriguez would become the next face of the sport. And that a bumper crop of rookies led by Isa Molde and Tots Carlos would propel the University of the Philippines to a women’s volleyball crown.

Those promises—which were actually foisted on them by people who saw their potential—still unfulfilled, the now veteran volleyball stars return for one last tour of duty for their respective squads with a mission to complete.

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“For me, I’m ready to lead the team,” said University of the East middle blocker Seth Rodriguez in Filipino. “I think with my four years of experience in the UAAP, I know how to play my part as a senior inside the court.”

Rodriguez needs to step up badly. The Lady Warriors’ top stars, Roselle Baliton, Judith Abil and Kath Arado, have burned out their college eligibility. And those graduations will sting for a school that has won just 15 of its last 140 games.

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“The exits of ate Judith, ate Kath and ate Roselle are a big deal,” Rodriguez added. “But the ones who are left will have to fill in their absences and help each other.”

“In a scale of 1 to 10, I think I’m at a seven right now,” said the 5-foot-10 senior when asked about her readiness to spearhead a UE turnaround in the UAAP. And that willingness to lead was a far departure from her rookie year, when Rodriguez would generally shrink in the limelight that her former coach had to remind her “to stop being too conscious in front of other people.”

Molde and Carlos return for one last tour of duty with the Lady Maroons, the team they were supposed to lead to the promised land when they joined it in 2015 along with the likes of top rookies Justine Dorog and Maristela Layug.

The UP team’s official Twitter account made the announcement that the four, along with fellow standouts Jessma Ramos and Rem Cailing, will anchor the team’s pursuit of a UAAP crown this year.‍‍

The team is currently in Japan for a training camp.

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TAGS: Isa Molde, Seth Rodriguez, Tots Carlos, UAAP, Women’s Volleyball
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