Goodbye RC Cola Army, ’til we see you again

Now it can be told. 

Philippine SuperLiga will lose one of its storied teams next season as RC Cola Army head coach Kung Fu Reyes confirmed that the Lady Troopers will be taking a break due to their impending military training needed for the players to get promoted.

Through the course of the 2016 Philippine SuperLiga season, there are speculations that some of Army’s vital cogs will miss the Grand Prix but the celebrated franchise still participated in the season ending conference en route to a fourth place finish.

But Reyes asserted that the “long overdue” military training will push through this coming year.

“Para isang buhos na lang kasi long overdue na yang ano e pag-cancel ng training nila dahil nga sa mga games so this time talagang si Army naman ang masusnod,” Reyes told Fox Sports.

“Naka-programa na sila sa training nila kasi para din sa promotion din nila kasi hindi ma-promote kung hindi nag-training.”

Reyes explained the team could get substitute players for the whole team but it won’t suffice against the level of play in the pro-level, hence their decision to just sit out the entire year.

“Malamang talagang sit out kami, sabi nga kung mag-tutuloy kami, kuha kami ng sibilyan ganun din e, wala din kaming tao na ibibigay na matibay, so talagang pahinga muna this year.”

“Unless hindi matuloy yung training pero I doubt hindi matuloy, any time next year sigurado or first quarter ng 2017 tuloy na yan,” he added.

Army saw a decline in their performance in the latter part of the 2016 PSL as the Lady Troopers succumbed to injury-plagued campaign in the All Filipino Conference and a late sudden rise in the Grand Prix where they failed to enter the Finals prior to a golden finish in the Invitational Cup.

And with the retirement of Michelle Carolino and Tina Salak, as well as Jessy de Leon’s departure to pursue her architecture plans, the once dominant squad will face drastic changes when they come back.

“Tsaka namin po-problemahin when we get there. May mga tao naman kami yun nga yung mababakanteng pwesto ng kay Tina, medyo mahabang proseso, sigurado mags-struggle sa una pero eventually in the long term naman magiging ok rin lahat,” Reyes addressed.

“Umiikot lang naman yan e, kami dati kami yung talagang maganda yung lineup pero this time syempre yung mga lumalabas kailangan palitan. Yung mga papalit naman is hindi ganun katitibay tulad nung mga naglaro na sa amin dati.”

The Lady Troopers won a total of five championships in PSL since the league started in 2013. – John Chester Fajardo

Follow this writer on Twitter: @Chester_Fajardo