UAAP Volleyball

Final 4-bound La Salle bounces back from 1st loss, routs UP to near twice-to-beat

JR Isaga

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Final 4-bound La Salle bounces back from 1st loss, routs UP to near twice-to-beat

BACK ON TOP. La Salle super rookie Angel Canino celebrates with the rest of the Lady Spikers at the UAAP Season 85 women's volleyball tournament

UAAP Season 85 Media Team

La Salle rookies Angel Canino and 6-foot-1 project Shevena Laput lead the Lady Spikers' bounce-back win, sending the reeling UP Fighting Maroons to their eighth straight loss

MANILA, Philippines – The mighty La Salle Lady Spikers sent a loud reminder to the rest of the UAAP field that they are still the team at the top with an easy 25-15, 25-16, 25-16 blowout of the free-falling UP Fighting Maroons in Season 85 women’s volleyball at the PhilSports Arena on Sunday, April 16.

With the win that improved their record to 10-1 record following their first season loss, the Lady Spikers got closer to clinching one of the two coveted twice-to-beat berths, while the also-ran Maroons dropped their eighth straight assignment for a 1-10 slate.

Earlier in the day, defending champion NU helped La Salle make its 13th straight Final Four appearance after sweeping fifth-ranked FEU, also ousting once-mighty Ateneo in the process for the first time in 14 years.

Super rookie Angel Canino, sporting a new short haircut, led the bounce-back effort with 17 points off 13 attacks, 2 blocks, and 2 aces, while 6-foot-1 project Shevana Laput made the most of her first collegiate start with 9 points.

Setting the tone with a 10-point rout in the opening set, La Salle continued its dominant stretch in the second with an 11-5 start off a Fifi Sharma quick attack. UP never threatened the momentum flow as an Ethan Arce service error sank the Maroons to another 10-point hole, 14-24.

UP only put up a fight early in the third frame, but again sputtered in the endgame as Baby Jyne Soreno put the finishing touches with 2 of her 3 total points sealing the deal for La Salle.

“After that [first loss in the] UST game, they were told that at least they experienced how to rise back,” said La Salle assistant coach Noel Orcullo. “After the Holy Week, they were told to forget what happened and get back to learning how to bounce back. At least they showed it.”

Steph Bustrillo paced another forgettable setback with 10 points. Nina Ytang scored 9 with 6 attacks, 2 blocks, and 1 ace, while usual top scorer Aly Bertolano disappeared with just 2 points.

After gaining much-needed momentum in this game, La Salle next heads to a blockbuster match against the second-ranked Adamson Lady Falcons next on Wednesday, April 19, 2 pm, at the Mall of Asia Arena. UP then gets next dibs on Adamson on Saturday, April 22, 12 pm at the same venue. –

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