De La Salle made quick work of University of the Philippines, 25-12, 25-17, 25-19, while reigning champion Ateneo rolled to its third straight win with a 25-14, 20-25, 25-11, 25-14 beating of the hapless University of the East in the UAAP Season 84 women’s volleyball tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City Tuesday, May 17.
Alleiah Malaluan and Fifi Sharma proved to be too much for the Lady Maroons as the Lady Spikers improved to solo second at presstime with a 4-2 record.
Malaluan led De La Salle anew with 16 points off 15 spikes and a service ace while Sharma hammered down seven attacks and three blocks for 10 points.
“UP started strong talaga so coming into this game talagang double time ‘yong paghahanda ng team So the fact na maglalaro pa lang kami ng first game namin, ‘yong first match ng 10 [a.m.] so ‘di rin namin alam kung paano gagalaw ‘yong team,” said Lady Spikers assistant coach Benson Bocboc.
“Buti naman kahit papaano nakapag-adjust and then sa tingin ko nahirapan din ‘yong UP sa galawan so nakakuha tayo ng advantage on that.”
De La Salle showed dominance from the get-go as it easily secured the first set before UP slowly fought back in the next frames.
The Lady Maroons, however, remained shaky with their plays as the Lady Spikers converted 28 points off errors.
De La Salle also held off UP to 17 attacks only as Niña Ytang and Joan Monares only scored eight and five points, respectively. They were the two highest scorers for the Diliman-based squad, which sustained a 3-3 record.
Alyssa Bertolano, who was the Lady Maroons’ main gunner from the past couple of games, was limited to four markers only and sat out the rest of the third set.
In the second game, Faith Nisperos and Vannie Gandler led the Blue Eagles once again as the defending champions rose from three straight losses since opening their campaign to a 3-3 slate.
Nisperos posted 15 attacks, three service aces and a block for 19 points while Gandler posted 16 points off 12 spikes, three service aces, and a block.
The second set was the only hurdle Ateneo had to overcome before coming in blazing in the third and fourth frames as UE fell to a 0-6 hole.
After an easy third set win, the Eagles led by as many as 12 points near match point, 23-11, before Erika Raagas and Gandler connives down the stretch for the win.
Janeca Lana, who suffered an injury due to a bad fall in the last set, paced the Lady Warriors with 13 points while Dara Nieva chippes in 12 markers.