Archive for the ‘ Basketball ’ Category

Courtside princess

Ateneo de Manila University’s  courtside reporter-slash-DJ-slash-print model-slash-communications technology senior Jessica Mendoza. Photo By Nemi Que

In tales of folklore and fantasy, there exist atop high towers, glass caskets and faraway lands, maidens so fair that they are worshipped and adored as the most beautiful creatures of all. They are untouchable to ordinary men but very much desired — for skin so white and hair as black as night, for beauty and chic that says, “I’m so damn perfect. Rescue me, my much-awaited prince.” They wait patiently for knights to trot along on their steeds, ready to be whisked away to a time and place called happily ever after — whenever and wherever that “happily ever after” actually is.
Magic899 at Boracay
Of course in the modern age, you have high-powered women in high-powered heels, dressed in “don’t mess with me” black, working nine-to-five jobs, and sipping on Cosmos, besot with girlfriends and confidence during “Happily Ever After Hours.” The 21st century woman is cunning yet caring, seductive yet sensitive, alarming yet alluring — Eve and enigma both, in more ways than a stereotypical fairytale ending. She revels in male-dominated circles, works male-dominated jobs, is a rose among thorns and can hold her own — much like Ateneo de Manila University’s newest courtside reporter-slash-DJ-slash-print model-slash-communications technology senior Jessica Mendoza.

Don’t get me wrong. She’s far from being a 21st Century Ice Queen. “Je” (as she is fondly known) is sweet, smart and has a smile that easily lights up a room — and a face that launches a thousand SUVs. But when you’re forced to rough it up in a team huddle with some intense and sweaty men, devise a spiel, then report it live on camera in front of millions of viewers, and on other days, host a top radio program that airs to millions of people that tune in, and be prepared — be very prepared — for Fr. David’s Philo class, you’ve got princess and 21st-century womanly steel all rolled into one.

YOUNG STAR: What are you feeling right now, at this very moment?

JE MENDOZA: A little excited to eat. (Laughs) When I think about where I am and what I’m doing, it’s really overwhelming. It’s so much all of a sudden. Suddenly I was doing so many things. But I’m happy because I like all the things that I’m doing.
Jessica and Andi
You’re this year’s courtside reporter for the Ateneo Blue Eagles. How did you land that gig?

A friend of mine told me that auditions were coming up. So I went to audition. They gave us a topic and asked us to write a 30-seconder spiel about it to say in front of the camera. I thought I could read from my kodigo or something. But they told me to put it away. Fortunately, I did pretty well on the first run. Then I got a callback.
Jessica and Riki
How did you feel, after several other tests, when you finally got the job?

Oh, my God! Great! Yay! I was ecstatic. Then I realized, crap, this is hardly it. I have to prove myself throughout the season. Although they told us that they had faith in us, if worse came to worst, if we didn’t improve, we could be replaced. That’s a lot of pressure.
At UAAP Cheerdance Competition
What was the most difficult thing you had to deal with before going on camera?

Waiting is always the worst. The whole week prior to my first day, in the middle of class, I’d space out and be nervous. My blockmates would be like, “Are you okay?” It’s kind of like stage fright. But when you finally get to do it, suddenly it’s gone. But with courtside, after your first report, it’s hardly over.

What comes next?

You have to go into the huddle, and get more information for your next report for the next quarter. I hardly get to watch the games. I only get to watch during the fourth quarter. You’re always thinking about your next spiel, what information to get, and how to keep things interesting.

What’s the best piece of courtside advice you’ve ever gotten?

Give the audience the information that no one else knows because, sure, the analysts can analyze the statistics. But at the end of the day, we know what the coaches are thinking. We know what the players are feeling. So we can give it a different spin, a different flavor.

How does that work though? If you’re doing a live feed on your team’s strategy, doesn’t that enable the other team to “peep in” if they or their friends have access to live TV?

That’s why you have to balance it out and gain the trust of the team. Instead of giving out exactly what Coach Norman Black’s play is, you have to spin it in such a way that you say what he generally means but not be too vague or too detailed about it.

Do people recognize you now when you walk the hallways of Ateneo? Any stalkers?

No stalkers. (Laughs) But you know how Ateneans are. They don’t really go out of their way to say, “Oh my God, that’s…. “ It’s normal to us. No big deal. And I’m in school only in the morning. And during my breaks, I’m at Matteo Ricci. Some friends even told me that they overheard people saying that they weren’t sure if I even studied in Ateneo. I’m hardly ever seen. (Laughs)

What are your thoughts on the Green Archers?

Well, they’re a young team. I don’t know any of them personally. They are very, very good players. But they have a lot to learn. They have a lot of talent still that they have to work out.

How do you stay fit and camera-genic before a game?

I don’t really snack anymore so I’ve lost a few pounds since last year. It’s probably because of all the stuff I’m doing at the same time.
Jessica and Andi9
Let’s talk about your radio show. Magic 89.9’s Top 5 @ 5 with Andi-9 and Jessica. Who has been your best and worst on-air interviewee so far?

We were given the chance to do an interview with John Legend over the phone. It was really awkward and uncomfortable. I felt like we were asking the dumbest questions. But recently, we got to interview Hale. It was a lot easier because they were inside the booth and there was no lag. And we both knew Champ. I’d like to think we improved since our John Legend interview last March.
Jessica with Slick Rick of Boys Night Out !
How has your DJ-ing helped your courtside reporting?

Confidence is one of the first things I learned from radio. To even have the guts to go and audition was a big thing for me. And also, articulation. I… I… I’m stammering right now. (Laughs) No, when you’re doing a show like Top 5@5, you have to keep the spiels very short. You learn to say only what’s necessary. And it helps with courtside because you’re only given 30 seconds max.

Who’s your favorite artist as of the moment?

Lately I’ve been listening to a band called Rise Against, and Oxford Comma. Light, indie-listening.

What do you do in your spare time?

I spend time with my friends. Go on lunches. Or spend some time at home.

Who do you look up to as a courtside reporter? As a DJ?

Lia Cruz. You can just tell she’s good. When I was first introduced to the team, they were like, you should watch Lia’s thing and see how she does it. As a DJ, probably Mo Twister. I think that he’s one of those guys who really worked his ass off. He can have a lot of haters but he also has a lot of followers. What people don’t realize is that radio is really a lot of hard work.

Finally, where do you see yourself five years from now?

I hope to still be working in front of the camera and still on the radio. Hopefully happy and content. But of course, you don’t want to be content right away. That way, you’ll have more reason to keep working for stuff.



The Triggerman

The one of Philippines finest 3 point shooter (no he’s the finest , no one has breach his shooting skills , better 3point shooter than James Yap , Ren Ren Ritualo and Don Don Hontiveros)

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