MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – The Far Eastern University (FEU) Lady Tamaraws outlasted the University of the East (UE) Lady Warriors in a five-set thriller, 25-15, 24-26, 25-22, 20-25, 15-9, in the UAAP Season 81 women’s volleyball tournament on Wednesday, March 6, at the Filoil Flying V Centre.
Lycha Ebon starred for the Lady Tamaraws as the standout rookie notched a career-high 21 points off 17 attacks, 3 aces and 1 block.
Celine Domingo also continued her hot streak for FEU with 17 points from 9 spikes, 5 blocks and 3 aces.
Even if the Lady Tamaraws struggled through the match, head coach George Pascua remains positive that the team has started showing maturity.
“Ayun, yung pagka-panalo namin, hindi siya ganoon kadali. Kasi sabi ko nga sa team ngayon, lahat unpredictable ang magiging performance. Na-manage namin noong 5th set,” said Pascua.
(Our win wasn’t easy. I told the team that everyone is unpredictable this season, but we managed to control the 5th set.)
The win propelled the Lady Tamaraws to the upper half of the standings at 3-2 while the Lady Warriors fell to 1-4.
UE’s Me-an Mendrez seemed to have recovered from her shoulder injury as she poured in 21 points to lead the Lady Warriors.
Just when FEU had a comfortable lead, the Lady Tamaraws’ errors sparked a UE comeback as the Lady Warriors staged a 9-0 closeout to steal the 4th set, 25-20, and extend the match to a decider.
Banking on the momentum, the Lady Warriors pulled away at 7-4 in the 5th set. The Lady Tamaraws, though, flashed their resilience to overturn the deficit, 15-9, and take the match.
After dominating the Lady Warriors in the opening frame, UE stayed within reach of FEU that resulted to an extended set-win thanks to Me-an Mendrez’s attack and Laizah Bendong’s drop shot.
As the neck-and-neck battled continued, UE nabbed the lead midway through the frame but failed to sustain the lead as Lycha Ebon lifted the Lady Tamaraws to a 4-0 closeout for the 2-1 match advantage.
The Lady Tamaraws were determined to finish the game as they got off to a 5-1 start in the 4th set and banked on that early lead to stay on top of UE, 17-16, before the Lady Warriors staged a blistering run to forge a decider. – Rappler.com
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