The captain is back.
After a gruesome ankle injury sidelined her in the preseason, Jema Galanza finally put on her comeback party — albeit a game late — as she led her Adamson Lady Falcons to their first win of the season against no less than early favorites FEU.
Galanza returned to her usual self when she tallied in a stellar 26-point, 15-dig, and 17 excellent receives production to tow the San Marcelino crew to their first win against the Lady Tamaraws since Season 78.
And while she admits that she sometimes double-takes on her moves on the court as a result of her injury, she says that she is now physically and mentally prepared to take on her last playing year in the UAAP.
“Actually kinakabahan pa rin ako, pero sabi ko sa sarili ko, kailangan ko mag-focus,” Galanza shares after their 25-23, 19-25, 25-22, 21-25, 15-12 win against FEU.
During the early stages of her recovery, Galanza’s doctors asked her if she would instead forego Season 80 and spend her last UAAP playing year in Season 81. The Adamson skipper, however, was determined to return from injury in time and play for the Lady Falcons this year.
“Kailangan ako ng team. Dahil last [playing year] ko na ‘to, hindi nila ako makikitaan ng kahinaan.”
Galanza put on a steady performance from the get-go against FEU, but she rose up to the challenge in the crucial moments of the fifth set, scoring a couple of Adamson’s last few points including the game winner.
“Tinuloy ko lang kung ano ang ginawa ko since first set, hanggang last set, dapat same lang,” shared Galanza.
With the team banking on her again, Galanza says that she isn’t feeling any pressure at all as she trusts her teammates game in and game out.
“Walang pressure talaga kasi lahat kami may katulong, hindi sa akin lang lahat ng trabaho. May Paat kami, may Dacoron, may Emnas, may Soyud. So walang pressure talaga.”