MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED)- The University of Santo Tomas Golden Tigresses strengthened their campaign for a Final Four slot in the 79th UAAP Women’s Volleyball tournament by taking down Far Eastern University in 4 sets,17-25, 25-17, 26-24, 25-21 on Saturday, March 25 at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan.
After trailing for most of the 3rd set, the Lady Tams orchestrated a rally as they capitalized on UST’s reception errors down the stretch to force a tiebreaker. The Tigresses, however, maintained composure as they wrapped up the set at the 26th mark for 2-1 lead in the match.
The España-based squad set up a comfortable cushion to start the 4th, earning the chance to pull away with a victory at 24-16. FEU, meanwhile, refused to go down without a fight as it took 5 match points away to cut the deficit to 3.
It was EJ Laure who put an end to the rally as she finished the match by adding another mark on the scoreboard. She finished with a game-high 20 markers for the Tigresses, who executed better floor defense with 77 excellent digs compared to FEU’s 58.
“Maganda, pero dikit-dikit pa rin [sa standings] eh, hindi pa namin kino-consider [ang Final Four],” said UST head coach Kungfu Reyes after the game.
(It’s good the standings are neck-and-neck so we’re not considering [the Final Four] yet.)
The Tigresses’ shotcaller likewise hopes that following the victory, the team can maintain momentum in the last few stretches of the elimination round, when it faces other contending teams including defending champs La Salle.
Team captain Sisi Rondina added 15 markers on 10 spikes, 3 blocks, and 2 service aces for UST, while Dominique Pacres had 9.
Bernadeth Pons meanwhile paced the Lady Tams with 17 points on 14 spikes and 3 aces, while Jerrili Malabanan and skipper Remy Palma contributed 13 and 12, respectively.
The Tigresses now share a win-loss record of 7-4 with National University, while FEU drops to a 5-6 slate.
In their quest for a spot at this year’s semifinals, the two teams will enter crucial clashes in the following days as the Tigresses face De La Salle University, while the Lady Tams square off with University of the East on Wednesday, March 29.
UST (3): Laure 20, Rondina 15, Pacres 9, Bicar 8, Meneses 6, Lastimosa 4, Cortez 3, Francisco 1, Viray 1
FEU (1): Pons 17, Basas 13, Palma 12, Malabanan 5, Villareal 4, Negrito 3, Guino-o 2, Agudo 2
There are no comments yet. Add your comment to start the conversation.