Eya Laure dropped another 28 points and made sure to take the win for España this time around.
Laure led University of Santo Tomas to eke out a nail-biting 26-24, 22-25, 25-27, 25-23, 15-12 win over De La Salle University in a five-set thriller in the UAAP Season 84 women’s volleyball tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City Thursday night, May 12.
The Golden Tigresses showed bigger hearts despite both teams running out of steam in the fifth and decisive set but Laure never wavered and constantly became the main sparkplug for UST.
Tied at 12-all, Laure hit a through-the-block attack and soared for an off-speed hit to put the Tigresses at match point.
She scored three straight points for UST before rejecting Baby Jyne Soreno’s attack on the frontline for the win.
The Tigresses overcame a four-point deficit, 11-7, capped by Thea Gagate’s power tip when Laure was repositioned at the back row due to rotation.
“‘Yong laro kasi very dynamic ‘yong complexion ng laro talagang up and down just like a roller coaster ride,” said Tigresses head coach Kungfu Reyes as the game lasted for two hours and 50 minutes.
“Very inspiring ‘yong laro kasi every time na kaharap mo si coach Ramil [de Jesus] at ‘yong squad niya nailalabas ng both teams ‘yong quality ng laro. Sabi ko kung matalo kami doon, ico-commend ko pa ‘yong player namin kasi first time maka-encounter ng ganito kagandang laro. ‘yong transition ng game talagang everybody’s game.”
The Season 81 Rookie of the Year did it all on both ends and finished with 23 spikes, three service aces, two blocks, and 20 excellent digs, just six points away from libero Bernadett Pepito’s 26.
Laure’s heroics also forced the fifth set after securing the fourth frame with an off-the-block kill to answer Fifi Sharma’s tip in the previous play.
Ysa Jimenez also fired 13 points off 11 attacks while Camille Victoria and Kecelyn Galdones chipped in 11 points apiece for the Tigresses, who improved to a 3-1 record.
Alleiah Malaluan paced the Lady Spikers, who fell to a 2-2 slate, with 26 markers off 24 spikes and two service aces.
Gagate and Jolina Dela Cruz added 12 points each while Soreno had 11 markers.