Ateneo sweeps season, repeats as UAAP volleyball champion
The Ateneo Lady Eagles repelled rivals De La Salle Lady Spikers, 25-22, 25-17, 25-23, to complete a season sweep and bag their second consecutive championship in the UAAP Season 77 women's volleyball tournament on Saturday, March 14 at the Mall of Asia Arena.
AS IT HAPPENS: Ateneo vs La Salle (UAAP 77 Volleyball Finals Game 2)
Unlike last year's long and winding path to the top, the Lady Eagles were in control this entire season and barely gave up sets on their way to a 16-0 romp.
The Lady Spikers were the last team to sweep the season and win the title in 2004 after a 14-0 sweep and became outright champions.
"We’re very happy. Not only back to back but also sweep,” said Ateneo team manager Tony Boy Liao. "Our hardwork paid off."
Back-to-back season MVP Alyssa Valdez tallied a game-high 20 points including 19 kills to lead the Lady Eagles.
Ahomiro, who also had 3 service aces, was named Finals MVP.
An injury-plagued Lady Spikers squad, who lost team captain and ace scorer Ara Galang as well, was hard-pressed to give the defending champions much of a fight.
The Lady Eagles broke down the Lady Spikers' net defense towards the end of set 1 as they outran a La Salle side that showed signs of life despite being undermanned.
But in set 2, Ateneo broke the game wide open and erased La Salle's blocking completely to lead by 18-10. The multi-titled Lady Spikers tried to come back and inched to within 20-16 but the Lady Eagles were too sharp to break down.
La Salle, which had a better showing overall and played with more energy compared to Game 1, kept it close again in the third canto, even leading by 12-9. But Valdez led a 4-0 charge to wrest control of the game and simply went on cruise control the rest of the way.
An injury-plagued Lady Spikers squad, who lost team captain and ace scorer Ara Galang as well, was hard-pressed to give the defending champions led by back-to-back season MVP Alyssa Valdez much of a fight. – Rappler.com
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