Home Sports Xyza Gula proves worth for UST Tigresses this season

Xyza Gula proves worth for UST Tigresses this season


UST Tigresses' Xyza Gula with coach KungFu Reyes during the UAAP Season 86 women's Finals game against NU Bulldogs

UST Tigresses’ Xyza Gula with coach KungFu Reyes during the UAAP Season 86 women’s Finals game against NU Bulldogs. –MARLO CUETO/INQUIRER.net

MANILA, Philippines — Xyza Gula has proven this UAAP Season 86 women’s volleyball tournament that she’s always ready whenever her number gets called.

Although Rookie of the Year and 2nd Best Outside Spiker Angge Poyos played through her right ankle sprain in Game 2, her injury from Game 1 limited her from unleashing her lethal form leading to spot minutes playing time.

Despite missing their leading scorer, UST had no shortage of talent as Gula showed her next-man-up mentality, coming off the bench with a team-high 18 points, 11 excellent receptions, and 10 digs.

READ: Xyza Gula has limelight as UST seeks to extend eye-popping run

But her gallant stand for the Tigresses fell short as they settled for a runner-up finish on Wednesday in front of  22,515 fans at Mall of Asia Arena.

“My mindset was to play my game since this is for Angge and the UST community, who went to school at midnight just to buy tickets,” said Gula in Filipino after their 25-23, 23-25, 27-25, 25-18 loss to NU in Game 2. “We gave our best but we fell short.”

The Tigresses’ offense was centered on starting wing spikers Poyos, Jonna Perdido, and Reg Jurado but Gula proved all season long that she can deliver anytime for the team.

READ: NU Lady Bulldogs sweep UST Tigresses for volleyball title

The UST spark plug believes her instrumental role was a product of their hardwork since the preseason.

“Since last year, we’ve been playing and training together. I always think of the team’s hard work and sacrifices every time I receive an opportunity to play,” she said.

Gula remained proud of their unexpected run despite settling for silver but she promises to be a better player for UST next season.

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“We will work harder as a team next season. We will try to have a more stable teamwork and be stronger mentally and physically. Sorry [to our supporters] we fell short,” Gula said.

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