Pauline Gaston: Ateneo Lady Eagles’ new ace

Pauline Gaston: Ateneo Lady Eagles’ new ace

- Pauline Gaston of the Ateneo Lady Eagles showcased her talent during their 5-set loss in the Shakey’s V-League

- Even though Gaston contributed 17 points to the game, it was not enough for them to beat Technological Institute of the Philippines (TIP)

- This was the first official game of the Lady Eagles after Alyssa Valdez and Amy Ahomiro graduated from the team

There were a lot of apprehensions about the Ateneo Lady Eagles this year. Without the three-time Most Valuable Player (MVP) Alyssa ‘Phenom’ Valdez and Amy Ahomiro in their roster, the team has a lot to work on.

The adjustments they had to undergo were felt during their loss against the Technological Institute of the Philippines (TIP) during the 5-set game in the Shakey’s V-League last Monday.

However, as the saying goes: when one door closes, another opens.

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Pauline Gaston: Ateneo Lady Eagles’ new ace

Even with Gaston’s 17 points, the Ateneo Lady Eagles went home without a win. (Photo credit: Abante-Tonite)

As Valdez closed hers, it looked like Pauline Gaston just opened a new one for the team. The rising volleyball player led her team with 17 points during the game.

This was the longest time for Gaston to play on the court so despite her delight for the opportunity; she wasn’t able to fully enjoy the moment and said, “It would have been better if we got a win.”

Dubbed by Ateneo head coach Anusorn Bondit as his ‘next project,’ Gaston appears to have a lot more to give.

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Ponggay, as she was fondly called by the people close to her, must have felt her belongingness in the sport industry given that she’s the daughter of the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) player and former head coach of the Lady Eagles, Fritz Gaston.  Her mom, on the other hand, belonged in the glitz and glam of beauty pageants.

Pauline Gaston: Ateneo Lady Eagles’ new ace

Valdez and Ahomiro’s loss in the roster was deeply felt by the Lady Eagles. (Photo credit: Rappler)

Gaston only appeared for a few minutes in the last season of University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) since she was only there as a buffer for the opponent team’s attacks.

During her first starring game, Gaston showed space for improvement but she did not face it alone as Coach Bundit was seen guiding her to control the trajectory of her spikes. Amidst all the pressure, the athlete remained confident – or at least that’s what she was saying to herself despite the overwhelming nerves that kicked in during the game.

It was not a day of celebration given the absence of Jhoana Maraguinot and middle hitter Bea de Leon, but then again this wasn’t just another team.

“We know what we’re capable of,” said Gaston and it’s hard to disagree with her.

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The Ateneo Lady Eagles managed to lead sets 2 and 4 but ultimately lost in the end. The fact that the veteran players weren’t around for the game didn’t help them and although they gave a good fight, the errors in their service and attacks ended their chances for a win.

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