Hosted by DLSU’s Courtside Reporter, Eileen Shi, and fellow Lasallian and UAAP Digital Insider, Armand Hernandez, players from different sports began their journey to get the title back to Taft after coming up short in last year’s UAAP General Championship. “We want to boost, cheer up and do everything for our teams para tumaas pa yung Animo Spirit nila in time for the opening,” conveyed USG Vice President for Internal Affairs, Brian Chen, who headed this year’s Animo Rally.
(We want to boost, cheer, and do everything for our teams so that the Animo will be much higher in time for the opening.)
USG President, Mikee de Vega, led the opening prayer to indicate the start of the event. Later on, the rookies from the first term sports paraded in their best costumes. They put on a merriment performance as they established their presence in the DLSU sports community and to the numerous students and faculty that came to witness the event.
Afterwards, the guest speaker, Marielle Benitez, shared her inspirational message to the Lasallian athletes. As a DLSU alumni and a UAAP icon, Benitez shared the experiences and challenges that she faced when she was part of the DLSU Football Team. She mentions that in being a student-athlete, there are situations that will test them physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. However, she tells them that these instances are important to develop one’s character. “Experiences in life make us who we are and my experiences in sports here in DLSU has definitely molded me into the person I am today. We all know that sports is not the end, it’s just the beginning, it’s part of one’s life. But what is important are the lessons and the values that we get from it; the person we become because of it,” she added.
The Animo Rally went on with more traditional and outrageous performances from the rookies for the second semester sports of the UAAP. The performances, though, did not stop there, as the taekwondo team had their own unique number as they demonstrated their fighting skills and a little bit of a dance fusion routine for the audience.
Following the performances of the second term rookies and the Taekwondo team was the traditional Torch Lighting Ceremony conducted by members of the Office of Sports Development and the captains of each UAAP sport this season. Along with this ceremony was the oath-taking of the athletes led by the team captains on stage. As a tribute for UAAP Season 80, the captains of all teams enlightened the crowd with a performance of their own. More head-turning performances continued to energize the crowd as the DLSU Animo Squad prepared an outstanding routine, followed by an astounding number from the La Salle Dance Company-Street.
Moving remarks from Bro. Bernard Oca FSC, concluded this year’s Animo Rally; “I hope you have that Spirit, and you are going to be champions this year,” he says, as he confidently believes that the players of De La Salle University can go for Gold – claiming the UAAP General Champions title back for La Salle.
The Animo Rally serves as the tone that the athletes would feed upon in every UAAP season. Every year, event organizers would try to change up these events and this year, the Animo Rally has impacted the athletes as the overall event got them excited to represent this season. With so many performances, athletes from every sport said they enjoyed this year’s rally; “I think this one has more hype, this one’s more lively compared to last year,” said Anton Acuña from the baseball team.
The athletes were not the only ones who gained excitement for UAAP Season 80: first-time Animo Rally attendee, Hernandez mentions, “Actually this is my first time to attend Animo Rally, but what I really liked about this year’s Animo Rally is that I see that the athletes are very prepared for the upcoming UAAP season.”
The Animo Rally may have concluded, but the Animo Spirit garnered in the event will be expected to transition to the players’ performances throughout Season 80.