MARIVIC Velaine “Ria” Meneses may not be as popular as her uncle, PBA legend Vergel “Aerial Voyager”, Meneses yet.
But she is surely making sports fans take notice.
Sports excellence, after all, runs in the family.
The 6-0 Meneses is now one of the vital cogs in University of Santo Tomas’ campaign in Season 79 of the UAAP volleyball championships.
The daughter of former Jose Rizal Unversity star Vic Meneses and wife Melody and niece of Vergel Meneses is leading the Lady Tigresses’ assault against the elite teams of the UAAP.
Meneses is certainly a big revelation since being discovered by former volleyball superstar-turned-commentator Mozzy Ravena, wife of former PBA player Bong Ravena.
Meneses started to play volleyball in Mary the Queen School in Malolos, Bulacan where Mozzy spotted her before bringing her to UST under coach Ogie Mamon.
Meneses quickly demonstrated her skills and served as a pillar of strength for team with her height, often taking on taller and more-experience opponents
Meneses had an impressive rookie season in 2013 when she took care of the middle for the Tigresses. She was named as the Best Middle Blocker in Season 77 and led UST to a respectable fifth-place finish.
Now on her fourth year with UST, Meneses joins comebackung player Pam Lastimosa, Ennanje Laure and Cherry Ann Rondina as they try to lead the Espana-based team to a final four aspiration and possibly, a title.
Last month, Meneses and the Tigresses captured the prestigious UniGames volleyball title in Dumaguete City.
Meneses was also named Best Middle Blocker in Shakey’s V-League Season 11 First Conference in just her second season with the Tigresses. She was also named Best Middle Blocker in 2015 Season 12 Open Conference and SVL 2016 Season 13 Reinforced Conference.
Last year, Meneses was selected to represent the Philippines in 2016 Asian Under-23 Womens Volleyball Championship but a knee injury forced her to miss some of games.
The future certainly looks bright for Meneses.