Kalei Mau provided the missing piece in the championship puzzle of F2 Logistics when it won the Philippine Superliga (PSL) All-Filipino Conference title.
The Filipino-American spiker delivered the spark, powering the Cargo Movers to a strong start and an even stronger finish to cop the PSL crown.
In Game 1, Mau delivered 27 points to lift the Cargo Movers to a nail-biting five-set win. Then, she followed it up with a game-high 19 points, including the title-clinching kill from the back, to lead the Cargo Movers back to the All-Filipino throne after a two-year absence.
When the smoke cleared, Mau emerged as the Most Valuable Player of the conference.
“It’s such a great accomplishment for me and my team,” the hard-hitting spiker from Arizona University said.
“This is such an incredible feeling. I never felt this way before.”
But becoming a champion proved to be a blessing in disguise.
Before landing on F2 Logistics, Mau was the cornerstone of United VC, which failed to breeze past the semifinals.
United VC, however, folded up, leaving Mau looking for a new team.
And with days before the opening of the All-Filipino, the Cargo Movers came calling.
“It’s good that I joined the team at the very last minute,” she said, recalling the very moment that she joined Aby Marano, Kim Fajardo, Ara Galang, Dawn Macandili, Kianna Dy and the rest of the Cargo Movers in training.
She said their mindset and fighting spirit carried them through.
“We had a strong mindset. We said that we needed to get the rhythm, we needed to get on momentum to get to them early,” she said.
“I thought we did really well on the defensive end and then the offensive end just took care of itself.”