Sta. Lucia backs development of volley teams
STA. Lucia Land Inc. has put its name in Philippine volleyball map with its debut in the Philippine Super Liga, the semi-pro league for the second biggest televised sport spectacle in the country.
The property developer’s newest sports foray started in this year’s PSL Invitational conference where the company formally introduced its team, the Sta. Lucia Lady Realtors, composed mostly of a selection of NCAA players from College of St. Benilde and University of Perpetual Help. Joining PSL is in line with Sta. Lucia’s tradition of being a leading sports patron.
“We are supporting Filipino volleyball talents and we want to be part of the development of volleyball in the Philippines,” said Sta. Lucia Lady Realtors’ team manager Michelle de Castro at the opening ceremony of the PSL Invitational held at the Filoil Flying V Center in San Juan recently.
De Castro added that Sta. Lucia Land Inc. also joined PSL to support the league in promoting volleyball. “With its growing popularity, the creation of a professional volleyball league is just around the corner and we’d like to be there when it happens,” said De Castro.
The Lady Realtors competing in the six-team PSL Invitational conference consist of Jannine Navarro, Cindy Imbo, Rachel Anne Austero, Maria Lourdes Clemente, Djanel Welch Cheng, Melanie Torres, Shyra Mae Umandal, Necelle Mae Gual, Rica Jane Enclona, Rialen Sante, Danna Henson, Jonah Sabete, and Ranya Musa. They will be under CSB volleyball team coach Michael Carino.
Carino and Cheng, the team captain, described the Lady Realtors as a very young team. Carino said he is giving the players balanced training to meet the higher expectations for the team.
“In the Invitational, our big challenge is to achieve a 50 percent improvement in performance so that in the All-Filipino conference, the most important conference in the PSL, we have already improved a lot,” said Carino. “Hopefully, by the end of 2017, we (will) win the championship.”
Cheng, who plays a key role in the team as setter, has expressed optimism that they can deliver what the Sta. Lucia management is expecting them to do. “We will try to be in the final four every conference,” she said.
For more than three decades, Sta. Lucia has also provided support to various Filipino sports and sports leagues. It was part of the PBA D-League’s predecessor, the Philippine Basketball League, from 1987 to 1992. Sta. Lucia also had a team in the Philippine Basketball Association from 1993 to 2010 that won two championship titles.