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Foton tempers expectations

FOTON will parade a young core when it sees action in the PVL Invitational Conference. Photo courtesy of Foton

A young – but fighting team – will carry the banner of Foton when it marches in the Premier Volleyball League Invitational Conference set on 27 June.

Shaya Adorador and Jasmine Nabor will be at the helm of the young core that aims to relive the glory of the Tornadoes team that won two titles in the defunct Philippine Superliga.

The Tornadoes tapped seven players from its sister team, Chery Tiggo, and were reinforced by free agents and college standouts.

Joining Adorador and Nabor, who played big roles in the Crossovers’ historic championship run in the 2021 PVL Open Conference held in Ilocos Norte, are other former Chery Tiggo players May Luna, Seth Rodriguez, Jaila Atienza, France Ronquillo and Bingle Landicho.

The Crossovers also acquired the services of veterans Nene Bautista from Army, which took a leave of absence, and former BaliPure wingers Bern Flora and Carly Hernandez.

National Collegiate Athletic Association Season 98 Most Valuable Player Mary Rhose Dapol of University of Perpetual Help got the green light to play for Foton through a Special Guest License.

Also suiting up for the Tornadoes are University of Santo Tomas products Maji Mangulabnan and Babylove Barbon as well as Sydney Niegos of Jose Rizal University.

A Daily Tribune source said longtime Foton assistant coach Brian Esquibel will handle the club with former University of Santo Tomas stars Ian Fernandez and Robert Boto serving as deputies.

Meanwhile, Aaron Velez will retain his spot as head coach of Chery Tiggo with UST head coach Kungfu Reyes and Erickson Ramos as deputies.

“Save for Shaya and Jasmine, Foton is such a young team,” said the source, speaking on condition of anonymity.

“That’s why the management vows to be very patient. Although the team will definitely compete, we are tempering our expectations because we want our players to develop.”

Foton will begin its campaign on 29 June against Petro Gazz at the FilOil EcoOil Centre in San Juan.

Joining Foton and Petro Gazz in Pool B are Choco Mucho, Cignal, F2 Logistics and another newcomer Farm Fresh.

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