Coaches praise Ghicka Bernabe for helping take PH cheerdance to greater heights
MANILA, Philippines — The cheerdance community paid tribute to National University Pep Squad coach Ghicka Bernabe, who announced her retirement moment after earning their seventh title in the UAAP on Saturday at Mall of Asia Arena.
Far Eastern University Cheering Squad coach Randell San Gregorio praised Bernabe for taking the Cheerdance Competition to greater heights as she led the NU Pep Squad to seven championships in the last nine editions.
“Ghicka is the heart and soul of NU. Not to take away anything from the other coaches, but Ghicka has a different touch. I’m sure meron siyang naibigay dun sa team na siya lang yung nakaka-offer kaya nagiging ganun yung atake ni NU,” said San Gregorio. “All praises go to her. I’m sure NU will still be great but they’re greater or can be greatest with Ghicka.”
“I wish her all the best in the next chapter of her life as a married woman. Stay safe always,” he added.
Bernabe, who began coaching NU in 2010 after competing for the FEU Cheering Squad from 2005-2009, attributed her successful stint to her alma mater.
WATCH: National University coach Ghicka Bernabe and Pep Squad captain Daniela Silos after winning the #UAAPCDC85 title. | via Melo Fuertes, Inquirer Sports
Posted by Inquirer Sports on Saturday, December 10, 2022
“I ended my season with FEU a memorable and happy one and I’m forever grateful. If FEU didn’t make me a cheerleader, I won’t be here and get these achievements,” the NU Pep Squad coach said. “I was very happy and emotional earlier singing the FEU hymn. I felt I’m home for how many years. I never forgot the lyrics of our hymn. FEU is always in my heart.”
University of Santo Tomas Salinggawi Dance Troupe coach Mark Chaiwalla, who brought back his team to the podium after five years, also lauded the legacy of Bernabe.
“The legacy that coach Ghicka left in the Philippine cheer community, it’s really something. Something that Philippine cheer community is thankful for. And of course, look up to,” said Chaiwalla. “We couldn’t deny that the NU Pep Squad in the past years since they started to step up in 2012 had changed the Philippine cheer world in a very huge way. This is something that all of the cheerdancers can be thankful for.”
NU captain Daniela Silos and her teammates said they are honored to be coached by Bernabe, who not only taught them several routines but also countless life lessons.
“We will leave the team, remembering the learnings from coach Ghicka. Technically, she’s not just a coach for us as athletes, but she’s also our life coach and adviser,” Silos said.
Bernabe has been vocal for years that she’s not just the coach of NU Pep Squad, she’s also her cheerleaders’ No.1. fan.