IT’S a Southeast Asian Games to remember for the Philippine women’s and men’s beach volleyball teams.
For eight days, the country’s top sand court players put up a valiant stand in front of their home fans at the Subic Tennis Courts and their efforts were rewarded.
The women’s team of Sisi Rondina, Bernadeth Pons, Dzi Gervacio and Dij Rodriguez fulfilled their goal of bringing the country back to the podium for the first time in 14 years. It was also a breakthrough for Jude Garcia, Jaron Requinton, Edmar Bonono and James Buytrago as they gave the Philippines’ its first men’s beach volleyball medal.
“This has been such a historic feat for Philippine Beach Volleyball and we dedicate this win to our fellow Pinoy athletes who have sacrificed a lot to pursue what they love doing the most. We also dedicate this win to our Philippine Volleyball Community, who has continuously given us the strength and support to power through. Maraming salamat, Pilipinas!” said team manager Charo Soriano.
With five victories and producing a gallant effort in losses against traditional powerhouses Thailand and Indonesia in the single-league competition, the Rebisco-backed Philippines side matched the 2005 bronze medal finish by Fil-Ams Heidi Ilustre and Diane Pascua.