By KRISTEL SATUMBAGA
Games Today (The Arena, San Juan City)
9:30 a.m. – EAC vs Mapua (M)
11 a.m. – EAC vs Mapua (W)
12:30 p.m. – Letran vs SSCR (W)
2 p.m. – Letran vs SSCR (M)
3:30 p.m. – Letran vs SSCR (Jrs.)
Lyceum was a set away from the biggest upset of the season, but let the rare opportunity slip from its grasp.
San Beda dodged the upset axe as it outhustled Lyceum, 22-25, 19-25, 25-11, 25-17, 15-7, yesterday to remain unscathed in the NCAA women’s volleyball tournament at The Arena in San Juan City.
Down by two sets, the Lady Red Spikers refused to give up against the undermanned yet formidable Lady Pirates to secure their sixth straight triumph and at least a playoff for a semifinal slot.
Ces Racraquin exploded for 26 points on 20 kills and six aces while Nieza Viray added 10 points for San Beda, which exposed Lyceum’s weak reception by sizzling with 20 service aces.
Playing only with eight players, Lyceum still showed resilience in the first two sets bannered by Monica Sevilla, Christine Miralles and Cherry Rose Genova, but lost steam with its small rotation.
The Lady Pirates fell to their fifth loss against a win.
Earlier, Jose Rizal University bolstered its Final Four bid as it stunned perennial title contender College of St. Benilde, 25-21, 25-22, 25-21.
The Lady Bombers, who have never been into the semifinals since the format’s inception in 2008, banked on Shola Alvarez and Dolly Verzosa to even their win-loss record at 3-3 and tie with their rivals.
The hard-hitting Alvarez led the way with 21 points, 20 coming from kills including a spike that sealed the victory, while Verzosa poured all her 16 points on hits.
In men’s action, defending champion College of St. Benilde also hammered down JRU, 25-16, 25-17, 25-20.
Owen Bacani and Mark Jethro Orian led with 12 points each even as Isaah Arda and Francis Basilan added 11 as the Blazers jumped to joint second with 5-1.