By Kristel Satumbaga

Fans and players expressed their heartbreak over the cancellation of the UAAP Season 82 due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic as it affected the semester’s centerpiece sport — volleyball.

“UAAP” trended on Twitter on Tuesday night moments after the league’s announcement, saying that “the conditions for the resumption… can no longer be met” following the government’s extension of the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) to April 30.

“Haaayss… sakit sa heart,” said University of Santo Tomas’ EJ Laure on her Twitter account.

Fans were anticipating EJ’s return this season from injury as she was to team up with younger sister Eya in the hope of steering the Lady Tigresses to the championship they failed to win last season.

Other players who also aired their sentiments on social media were Eya Laure, Ateneo’s Jules Samonte and Dani Ravena, and National University’s Risa Sato, to name a few.

Volleyball was initially scheduled to start mid February, but was delayed for two weeks due to COVID-19 threat.

The tournament, however, was able to host a few match playdates before it was halted due to the lockdown.

The Ateneo Lady Eagles are gunning for a second straight crown while the NU Bulldogs seek a three-peat title.

Other collegiate sports affected were football, baseball, softball, athletics, tennis and 3×3 basketball. The league had already cancelled all remaining high school events last month.

“All other issues related thereto will be resolved at the proper time as we continue to focus our time, energy and resources in battling this crisis,” said the statement signed Season 82 President Emmanuel Fernandez and Executive Director Rebo Saguisag.

Prior to the season cancellation, the league adjusted its collegiate calendar by looking at resuming tournaments no earlier than May 1.

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