De La Salle stayed sharp on both ends and shut down Eya Laure and University of Santo Tomas, 25-23, 25-17, 22-25, 25-8, in the UAAP Season 84 women’s volleyball tournament Thursday, June 2 at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
Leila Cruz had a breakout game of 15 points built on 13 spikes and two blocks as four other Lady Spikers scored in double-digits to take the solo second spot and improve at 8-3 record.
Fifi Sharma and Thea Gagate fired 13 points apiece while Jolina Dela Cruz and Alleiah Malaluan scored 11 and 10 markers, respectively, while Mars Alba also tossed 25 excellent sets apart from her lone point.
De La Salle exacted revenge on UST and held off Laure to a season-low of eight points. In their first encounter, the former Rookie of the Year awardee dropped 28 points to help the Golden Tigresses survive with a 26-24, 22-25, 25-27, 25-23, 15-12 victory.
The Lady Spikers also capitalized on the 31 points given up by the Tigresses off errors, especially in the fourth set where the Espana-based squad completely lost steam and eventually crumbled.
“I think ‘yong lumabas sa amin dito is more of the consistency ng team following up doon sa mga previous matches namin na straight sets,” said De La Salle assistant coach Benson Bocboc.
“So far, going up ‘yong mga performance ng mga players and nagkataon ngayon na may lumabas na naman na mga scorers,” added Bocboc, commending the likes of Cruz and Sharma for their timely contributions.
After dropping the third set, De La Salle led by as many as 11 points in the fourth frame, 16-5, to reach the second technical timeout with a sigh of relief capped by a Sharma soft tip.
The Lady Spikers never looked back at that point and limited the Tigresses, who slid to third place with a 7-4 slate, to only three points in the ensuing plays en route to the sweet revenge.
Ypril Tapia and Imee Hernandez paced UST with 12 points each while Camille Victoria added nine markers.
Earlier, University of the Philippines snapped its two-game skid with a 25-10, 25-19, 25-7 routing of the already ran Far Eastern University to keep its Final Four hopes alive.
After a tightly-contested second set, the Lady Maroons unleashed fireworks in the third and final frame en route to a comfortable 22-6 cushion to pull away for good.
Aly Bertolano led all scorers with 14 points on top of 10 kills and four service aces while Ethan Arce and Stephanie Bustrillo hammered down 13 and 12 markers, respectively, as UP improved to a 5-6 record.
Chen Tagaod and Jean Asis topscored for the Lady Tamaraws, who slipped to a 1-10 slate, with six points apiece. ###