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Valdez, Reyes named to national pool

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Two of the most prominent rivals in the collegiate league, Alyssa Valdez and Mika Reyes were named to the national volleyball pool.

Valdez and Reyes, two of the most popular spikers in the country, spearhead 23 other players to the pool that will comprise the national team to the 29th SEA Games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in August.

The 25 players, who were picked after a series of tryouts conducted by the larong Volleyball ng Pilipinas, Inc. (LVPI), will continue to undergo a rigid tests before the final 12 plus two alternates are to be named by first week of May.

Other players included in list that was bared in Tuesday’s Philippine Sportswriters Associaiton (PSA) Forum at the Golden Phoenix Hotel in Pasay City were Kim Fajardo, Jaja Santiago, Lourdes Clemente, Den Den Lazaro, Rachel Anne Daquis, Maika Ortiz, Din Din Manabat, Rhea Dimaculangan, Aiza Pontillas, Ria Meneses, Myla Pablo, Jovelyn Gonzaga, Maddie Madayag, Kat Tolentino, Kim Dy, Dawn Macandili, Genevieve Casugod, Bia General, Roselle Baliton, Kathleen Arado, Elaine Kasilag, Abigail Marano and Grethcel Soltones.

Francis Vicente is the head coach of the women’s team, who admitted it would be hard to pick the Final 12 because the lineup is “well-decorated and a team of superstars.”

The Philippines last won a SEA Games gold in women’s volleyball in 1993 edition in Singapore, following a bronze-medal finish in 1991 (Manila) and 2005 (Manila).

Meanwhile, the men’s pool as revealed by head coach Sammy Acaylar includes

Mark Deximo, Relan Taneo, John Kenneth Sarcena, Geuel Asia, Rey Taneo, John Vic de Guzman, Alnakran Abdilla, Howard Mojica, Mark Alfafara, Dave Cabaron, Peter Torres, Lorenzo Capate, Bonjomar Castel, Reyson Fuentes, Herschel Ramos, Louwie Chaves, Jack Kalingking, John Paul Bugaoan, John Carascal, Eddiemar Kasim and Esmail Kasim. (Axel Roman)