No regrets for Dani as she concludes Ravena period at Ateneo

Dani Ravena is the last Ravena to play in the UAAP after brothers Kiefer and Thirdy.

Dani Ravena is the final Ravena to play within the UAAP after brothers Kiefer and Thirdy. –UAAP PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines — As the final Ravena to play within the UAAP, Ateneo’s graduating libero Dani Ravena is ending her collegiate profession fulfilled after the Blue Eagles’ bronze medal end in Season 84 girls’s volleyball event.

As La Salle ended Ateneo’s title reign and its Cinderella run, 25-19, 25-20, 25-23, of their stepladder semifinal match on Thursday, Dani — the final to play for the Blue Eagles after his brothers Kiefer and Thirdy performed UAAP basketball — completed her faculty profession with none regrets.

Especially with what the Blue Eagles achieved, having gone from a 0-3 begin to a semifinalist towards all odds.

“We started from the bottom, literally, 0-3. Our greatest takeaway is the importance of being together despite the doubts about our team. Despite everything we heard that hurt us, we didn’t give in. We held each other’s hands and trust each other,” mentioned the Blue Eagles captain in Filipino after tallying seven digs in her ultimate sport.

“And for sure, as Faith (Nisperos) said, it may not be now, but this team will definitely fight until the end for the next years to come. So back to work right after,” she added.

Defending their crown from Season 81 final 2019, Ateneo was surrounded by naysayers after it misplaced its first three video games. 

But the Blue Eagles rose from their torpid begin with coach Oliver Almadro’s changes and the management of Ravena and Faith Nisperos to succeed in the stepladder semifinals with an 8-6 document, profitable three knockout video games from the final elimination sport towards University of the Philippines, playoff for No.4 towards Adamson, and eliminating the No.3 University of Santo Tomas.

Receiving quite a lot of hate feedback isn’t new for the 22-year-old libero, who joined Ateneo in Season 80 throughout Tai Bundit’s final season.


The youngest Ravena admitted their household has been receiving quite a lot of unfavorable ideas from some followers all through their careers. But that made them stronger as she didn’t let her doubters get below her pores and skin.

“Ewan ko, sa ibang tao baka masaya na sila na finally, ang tagal may Ravena. Ang daming nagsasabi, ang daming issues when it comes to me, especially, and Coach O,” Dani mentioned. “But it makes the journey sweeter. Despite everything they said, we all know the truth. Everyone worked hard and coach O didn’t give up on us and we didn’t give up on our teammates.”

For Ravena, one factor she will be happy with in her collegiate profession is staying centered on enhancing herself, amid the doubts.

“You really don’t have to prove anything to anyone. I remember saying this last championship season. If you will doubt yourself, you will lose. I just really worked hard on myself, whatever happens to the team,” she mentioned

“As an Ate (older sister), I had a different perception now. And I really grew from this experience. Without Coach O and the team’s trust, I won’t achieve these things. A learning experience for me. Definitely, something I will bring as I move forward with my life.”


Coach Oliver Almadro, Dani Ravena and the Ateneo Blue Eagles huddle for one last time in UAAP Season 84

Coach Oliver Almadro, Dani Ravena and the Ateneo Blue Eagles huddle for one final time in UAAP Season 84. –UAAP PHOTO

Ateneo coach lauded Ravena’s management that saved his younger staff collectively.

“People may doubt Dani, with me. People may doubt, us together. But we both agreed to keep on working,” Almadro mentioned. “And indeed, the latter part of the season, she’s doing well. And people can’t see what Dani is doing outside the court. She’s really leading the team, she even sacrificed her skills just to lead the team.”

“Dani led us. She really helped us in building this team. I really commend Dani for what she did this season. I’m happy for her, and congratulations to Dani, for bringing us in the Final Four, we’re already happy, because of Dani,” he added.

Seeing her coach nonetheless happy with their third place end crammed Ravena with satisfaction in her ultimate UAAP sport.

As she leaves these Blue Eagles, who will probably be led by Nisperos, AC Miner, Jaja Maraguinot, and Roma Doromal subsequent season, the libero captain believes the perfect is but to return for her younger teammates.

“It’s nice to see that the girls right now, despite being young, they keep on fighting. I’m just proud of the team, proud of where we ended,” she mentioned. “But for sure, all of us, we’re still hungry for more. Definitely, in the years to come, we’ll be back again. You’ll see us.”

“It was a learning experience. So definitely, it will be something that will push them forward to do better in the following seasons.”

Ravena admitted she’s nonetheless undecided about what’s subsequent on her profession path. But one factor is for positive, she’s going to attempt tougher to turn out to be a greater volleyball participant.

“Honestly, I’m not yet decided. But, I’m just more eager right now to really work on myself, to be better as a volleyball player. Because this loss of ours, it might hurt a bit, but for me, it gives me more determination, more drive to be better,” Ravena mentioned. “I know that I can do more, I could have done more. But my plan is to train better. Being an athlete doesn’t end in the UAAP.”


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