June 25, 2024

AVC: Jia De Guzman takes pride in young stars of Alas Pilipinas after win over India

AVC: Jia De Guzman takes pride in young stars of Alas Pilipinas after win over India
Jia De Guzman and Alas Pilipinas take down India. | Photo (c) RM Chua/One Sports

Jia De Guzman expressed immense pride in the young guns of Alas Pilipinas following their hard-fought victory over India in the 2024 AVC Challenge Cup on Friday night.

Facing a well-prepared Indian team that had thoroughly scouted their opening tussle with Australia a day ago, the Filipinas were up against a significant challenge.

From the start, India applied pressure, and even gave the Philippines a scare by taking the opening set.

However, Alas Pilipinas showcased resilience and depth, with the younger players rising to the occasion when it mattered most.

“What I'm really proud of is my team because everyone was really ready to step up and sobrang bilis naming naka-adjust in-game. India was very challenging, a little bit more challenging than Australia kasi na-scout na nila kami based on our game yesterday,” De Guzman said.

“I’m just really proud of this team.”

De Guzman, the national team captain, orchestrated the offense with her usual brilliance.

Yet, it was the impact of the younger talents that spelled the difference, De Guzman believes.

Angel Canino was electric. She fired on all cylinders and delivered the goods like a veteran, putting up a game-high 22 points on 19 attacks, two aces, and a block.

Eya Laure made her presence felt as well with 17 points, all but two coming from attacks, while Fifi Sharma and Thea Gagate imposed their will above the net with 12 points apiece.

The young guns stepped up so effectively that the prolific Sisi Rondina was able to finish with a modest nine points, well below her usual double digits.

Beyond the numbers, De Guzman praised the composure and energy her younger teammates brought to the game.

“They bring a different kind of power, different kind of fire and energy inside the court na sobrang kaming seniors din nadadala talaga,” the multi-titled setter opined.

“It’s really a good mix of fire, energy, and composure inside the game especially we’re really working on our endgames right now.”


De Guzman and the rest of the Alas Pilipinas seek to sustain their fine form and keep hold of their top spot in Pool A when they take on Iran tomorrow, May 25, at 7:00 p.m. It will air live on One Sports, One Sports+, and the Pilipinas Live app.