Someone asked me how my blog and newspaper column came to be titled "Bleachers Brew". It's like this, it's an amalgam of sorts of two things: The bleachers area in the stadium/arena where I used to sit when I would watch baseball, football, and basketball games and Miles Davis' great jazz album Bitches Brew. That's how it got culled together. I originally planned on calling it "The View from the Big Chair" that is a nod to Tears For Fear's second album, Songs from the Big Chair. So there.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Alyssa Valdez to lead UAAP,NCAA stars in RP Women's squad in U23 Volleyball championships

This appears on

UAAP, NCAA stars to banner RP Women’s U23 Volleyball team
by rick olivares

A new generation of stars will be donning the national colors when the 1st Asian Women’s U23 Volleyball Championships rolls around this coming May.

A pool of stalwarts from the UAAP and the NCAA have been listed for the event that will be the first held under the auspices of the newly formed Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Inc. after it was formally recognized by the Asian Volleyball Confederation and the Federation de International de Volleyball.

One of the team’s coaches, Roger Gorayeb of National University and San Sebastian College-Recoletos, submitted a list of candidates for the national side. The pool is led by the UAAP’s reigning Most Valuable Player, Ateneo’s Alyssa Valdez who is expected to take her second successive plum after leading the Lady Eagles to a 14-game elimination round sweep. Valdez’ other teammates, middle blocker Bea De Leon and setter Jia Morado are also on the list as are La Salle’s Ara Galang, Kim Fajardo, and Mika Reyes; SSCR’s  Gretchel Soltones and Alyssa Eroa; UST’s Marivic Meneses and EJ Laure; National University’s Dindin and Jaja Santiago, Myla Pablo, Fatima General, and Rica Diolan; Arellano University’s Christine Joy Rosario; Adamson’s Mylene Paat; FEU’s Christine Agno and Mary Joy Palma; and UP’s Nicole Tiamzon.

Gorayeb as well as co-coaches Sammy Alaycar of Perpetual Help University and Anusorn Bundit of Ateneo plan on expanding the pool after the UAAP season ends.

However, there is speculation that La Salle’s trio of stars might not participate after the national team, formed by the now discredited Philippine Volleyball Federation that tapped current DLSU coach Ramil De Jesus as its mentor, lost traction after the AVC and the FIVB recognized the LVP as the Philippines’ governing body for volleyball. According to Alaycar, the three Lady Spikers have been invited to be a part of the team but none of them have confirmed participation. The veteran coach surmised that they might simply be concentrating on the current UAAP season where they are in a Final Four battle against Gorayeb’s hard-charging NU Lady Bulldogs.

Gorayeb said that he is hoping the three will chose flag and country over the internecine wars that plagued volleyball for over a decade now. He also bared that the LVP is also studying whether this U23 team will also be the one sent to the Southeast Asian Games in Singapore in June of this year.

The Philippines is bracketed alongside Kazakhstan and Iran in Group A of the 1st Asian Women’s U23 Volleyball Championships. The matches will be played at the ULTRA and Cuneta Astrodome.

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