Who made Gretchen Ho’s all-time Ateneo Lady Eagles lineup?
MANILA, Philippines – Before the Ateneo Lady Eagles won consecutive UAAP titles this decade, the team turned into a championship contender behind a group of standout student-athletes who were called the “Fab Five.”
One of them was Gretchen Ho, who is presently well-known for her work in the media industry – sports, news, and social.
Ho, however, remains an athlete at heart.
On the third episode of At The Buzzer, a Rappler Sports podcast, she discussed her work in the industry and time as an Ateneo Lady Eagle.
One of the questions Ho tackled was to name her all-time Ateneo Lady Eagles starting lineup.
“Siyempre si Alyssa kasama na doon (Of course Alyssa will be there),” said the 30-year-old rising star.
Alyssa Valdez was a former UAAP MVP, and is in contention as the greatest Filipina volleyball player of all time.
“Jia Morado! Gusto ko maging setter si Jia! (I would like to have Jia as setter),” added Ho, who then named her third starter with a laugh:
“Siyempre kasama ako doon, ‘di ba! (Of course I would be a part of that)”
“Maybe Maddie (Madayag),” she then said. “Libero, Denden Lazaro.”
“Another open. Hmm… sino ba? (who else),” Gretchen asked.
“Maybe Fille!” she said, naming one of her Fab Five mates.
Ho then submitted another name: “Si Dzi! (Gervacio).”
It sounds like a formidable lineup.
In 2012, Ho helped propel Ateneo to its first UAAP finals appearance in women’s volleyball. The Lady Eagles won Game 1 against rival La Salle but lost the next two contests and the series.
Ho’s fourth season was supposed to be her last, but she returned in 2013 after finding motivation in her team’s finals appearance and after being asked to come back by then head coach Roger Gorayeb.
“With what we had, we gave our best, and we went far,” she said.
Ateneo, however, lost again to La Salle in the finals, ending the Fab Five’s tenure without a championship.
The Lady Eagles finally defeated La Salle in 2014 then successfully defended their title against the Lady Spikers in 2015 spearheaded by Valdez and new head coach Tai Bundit.
“We didn’t reach our goal – to get the championships – but it’s not easy to build a championship team.
“There are so many pieces you need to put together, so many learnings, and they learned from our lapses and got the championship after that,” said Ho, who goes further into detail about the topic during the podcast.
“So I don’t regret anything. I feel like it has given us that chip on the shoulder for us to be hungrier with life,” she added. – Rappler.com