“Okay lang pero hindi okay.”
Following La Salle’s 4-set loss to bitter rival Ateneo, an utterly deflated Ara Galang talked to FOX Sports and tried to compartmentalize how she felt after her erstwhile squad repratedly suffered from unfortunate meltdowns.
“Okay lang dahil first round pa lang. May chance pa para bumawi,” Galang said. “Hindi okay kasi makakasama rin ‘yun sa team. Bababa morale nila.”
“Ang ikinabuti lang, nakita mo kung ano pa ‘yung kailangan i-improve sa team,” she added.
In both the first and second frames, the reigning champions blew their 23-18 leads no thanks to a combination of unforced errors and pure grit from the Lady Eagles.
Though four Lady Spikers finished in double digits with Kim Dy top scoring with 15 points, their combined output was eventually equalized by the 31 errors committed by La Salle.
“Nung una kasi kulang sa panapos. Tapos ang daming errors,” said Galang. “Nung first and second sets dun lang naman nagkatalo. Nauuna sila sa score pero sila ‘yung bumibigay. Nara-rattle sila pag hinahabol sila.”
Talking about La Salle’s uninspired performance in the last set, she adds: “Nung fourth set nakita nilang lumalayo ‘yung kalaban parang gusto na lang nila bumitaw. Parang ayaw na nila gumawa ng paraan.”
Putting things in perspective, La Salle crumbling during crucial stretches just shows how much the team misses the leadership of veterans like Galang, Mika Reyes and Cyd Demecillo who all graduated post-Season 78.
At this point, however, Galang says this should not be an excuse anymore.
“Masasabi mong ramdam na nawala ‘yung seniors sa mga ganung pagkakataon pero kasi pang ilang game na ‘yan eh,” she said. “For me, dapat hindi na siya excuse. Prinactice din naman nila ‘yan eh. Medyo matagal na rin silang magkakasama. Nasa sa kanila na ‘yan paano sila mag adapt sa sitwasyon.”
Ateneo’s Michelle Morente proved to be La Salle’s kryptonite after she tallied another triple-double with 25 points, 19 excellent digs and 12 excellent receptions.
Asked how she thinks the Lady Spikers should move forward after the tough loss, Galang said they must work on improving themselves in order to contribute to the team’s goals.
“You learn from your mistakes. Kailangan i-improve at i-train mo kung ano pa ‘yung kulang mo as an individual para makatulong sa team,” Galang closed.