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MANILA, Philippines – The La Salle Lady Spikers sustained their hot start at the UAAP Season 85 women’s volleyball tournament, making quick work of the FEU Lady Tamaraws in straight sets, 25-16, 25-18, 25-21, on Saturday, March 11, at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig.
Thea Gagate led a balanced scoring effort for La Salle, putting 13 points, including some crucial points in the final stretch of the contest.
Angel Canino fired 13 markers as well, helping the Lady Spikers improve to a 5-0 record – the league’s best.
“We did not expect that the game would end in straight sets because FEU’s confidence was at a high heading to this game after a win against Ateneo,” said Lady Spikers interim head coach Noel Orcullo.
“We still need to rectify a lot about the team because we still commit some lapses, especially when we tend to relax while ahead, so it gives the opponents a chance to come back,” he added.
Trailing 8-7 in the third set, La Salle dumped 6 unanswered points to go ahead, 13-8.
FEU was able to come back and tie the game at 20-all, but Canino and Gagate delivered some timely points to clinch the victory for La Salle.
La Salle was able to dominate the first two sets primarily playing through Canino and opposite hitter Leila Cruz, who finished with 10 markers.
Alleiah Malaluan, who is recovering from a minor knee injury, made her season debut during the second set and ended up with a point, which happened to be the set point.
Chenie Tagaod tallied 10 points for the Lady Tamaraws, which fell to a 2-3 record.
Meanwhile, the FEU Tamaraws tallied their third straight victory at the expense of the La Salle Green Spikers, 25-21, 25-16, 21-25, 25-21.
Mark Calado registered his second straight 27-point outing, which was built on 23 attacks, an ace, and 3 blocks, none bigger than the rejection of opposing player JM Ronquillo that effectively ended the game.
“He still has a lot more to showcase, but I’m glad that I’m hearing he is bought into our system,” said Tamaraws head coach Rei Diaz on Calado, a former UAAP juniors’ MVP.
“We are fine with it, and the important thing is that we got the win and stuck with the plan,” he added.
Ronquillo paced La Salle’s offense with 15 markers as his team ended their own three-game win streak, which altered their record to 3-2. – Rappler.com