Volleyball star Cherry Ann Rondina leaps high, hits hard with purpose
By Deneb Batucan
CHERRY Ann Rondina is making a name for herself in the world of inter-collegiate volleyball, and even bagged MVP honors during her rookie year. While peers tower over her on the court, the 21-year-old’s powerful spikes always leave an impression as she brings out her A-game in every game.
Currently taking up Bachelor of Physical Education in the University of Santo Tomas, Cherry plays for the UST Golden Tigresses. The petite lady from Estaca, Compostela, Cebu has been playing volleyball since she was in Grade 3.
Cherry has always been into sports. She started with running and then progressed to volleyball when she found out that she had a natural ability to play it. “The sport is very interesting and challenging. It’s also a lot of fun,” she said.
Cherry started getting attention when she left the bench in Season 77 of the UAAP Women’s Volleyball tournament. She became a crowd favorite and made headlines in Season 78, where she scored 30 points for the Golden Tigresses during their opening game against Adamson University.
With great seasons behind her, and an even greater season coming, Cherry has become a household name in the world of college volleyball — and, more importantly, a star player for her beloved team.
Her happy demeanor and positive attitude may have fueled her rise to fame in the college volleyball scene. Along with her extraordinary skills, she brings a kind of energy that keeps her teammates on guard, never stopping to hope and long for the coveted championship.
Before her glory days, Cherry was a regular girl dreaming of a better life for her family. Coming from humble beginnings, Cherry, or Sisi to her family and close friends, grew up in Estaca with her three sisters and her father. Her mother works abroad as a domestic helper to provide for her family.
Having to move to Manila for school was hard for Cherry. She often misses home. But she is beyond thankful to have been given a great amount of skill in volleyball. “Because of volleyball, I have helped so many people, especially my family. I’m very blessed that God chose me to have this talent,” she said.
It was because of her talent that she got into a prestigious university in Manila and has even helped out her family financially. It helps that her whole town is cheering her on. Compostela becomes a ghost town whenever Cherry has a game. Everyone’s eyes are glued on the TV, excited to see their beloved Cherry play with everything she’s got.
As a player, training for Cherry is very important. “Treat every training like a game and treat every game like a championship,” she said. During game season, she trains every day and always strives to challenge herself and make herself better.
Cherry’s constant inspiration is her family. She dreams to give her family her diploma and eventually be the one to raise them. She wishes for her mother to come home and be with them again. To her, that is even greater than any kind of championship.
“All I can say is, whatever path you choose in life, just never give up and always thank the man above who guides and gives us strength. Always remember and thank the people who molded you and pushed you to who you are today. Make your loved ones proud and be yourself always. And lastly, always pray,” Cherry said.
Photographer: Glenn Noval
Make-up Artist: Carlo Damolo
Hair Stylist: Jerwin Bastatas
Locale: Degree9, Norkis Cyberpark, A.S. Fortuna St.