DLSU wins over Ateneo in UAAP women's volleyball
MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) - The De La Salle Lady Spikers dealt the Ateneo Lady Eagles their first loss in the first round of the UAAP Women's Volleyball tournament on Saturday, January 12.
They just showed why they’re the back-to-back UAAP champions.
The Lady Spikers started out like a diesel engine but finished the game with a bang as they upended archrival Ateneo de Manila University in 5 thrilling sets to take the 75th UAAP women’s volleyball tournament Saturday at the Fil Oil Flying V Arena in San Juan.
La Salle dropped the first two sets, before zooming ahead in the last 3 to book their 6th straight victory --- a 26-28, 21-25, 25-13, 25-21, 15-13 nipping of the erstwhile unbeaten Lady Eagles in a match that lasted 139 minutes.
Sophomore Ara Galang starred for the Taft-based squad, posting 18 points spiked by 14 kills, as the Lady Spikers needed all the stops they can get --- including a late injury to Ateneo star Fille Cainglet --- in taking the win in front of almost 8,000 fans who braved the torrential rains to troop to the Arena.
The towering Mika Reyes added 16 points off 12 kills and 4 blocks even as reigning MVP Abi Maraño and two-time Best Blocker Michele Gumabao chipped in with 12 and 10 points, respectively.
The Lady Eagles edged the Lady Spikers in the first set, 28-26, clawing back from a late deficit before taking the second set relatively easily, 25-21, as Alyssa Valdez and Cainglet displayed their offensive firepower.
But Ateneo’s attack began to wither in the third, with rookie setter Kim Fajardo and Galang doing the job for La Salle, who raced to an early 11-3 advantage and never looked back.
The Lady Spikers carried the momentum in the 4th, building a 7-2 advantage before allowing the Lady Eagles to come back and even take a 17-14 lead midway through the period.
However, La Salle refused to budge and dropped an 11-4 bomb to force a winner-take-all 5th set, 25-21, as Cainglet severely rolled her ankle after a bad fall.
Without Cainglet and with Valdez huffing and puffing, Ateneo managed to battle the Lady Spikers toe-to-toe, but a block by Reyes on a Valdez attack gave the 3-peat-seeking crew a 12-8 bubble that was enough to hold whatever rally the Lady Eagles mounted.
Fajardo outplayed star setter Jem Ferrer in the last 3 sets, finishing with 42 excellent sets and 8 points while Cyd Demecillo and Wensh Tiu had 9 and 5 points, in order.
Valdez finished with a game-high 23 markers off 16 hits, 4 aces and 3 blocks even as Cainglet tallied 16 markers before getting carried off the court.
Dzi Gervacio supported with 8 points and 14 digs, but her numbers weren’t enough to prevent Ateneo from losing their first game of the season. - Rappler.com