MANILA, Philippines – De La Salle University pounced on the spotty reception of University of the Philippines (UP) for a comfortable 25-15, 25-19, 25-19 victory in the UAAP Season 80 women's volleyball tournament on Wednesday at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan.
It was the defending champions' seventh win of the season against two defeats, keeping them at the top of the league standings. This was also their third win in a row since suffering a shock loss to Adamson University.
The Lady Spikers torched the Lady Maroons for 15 service aces, with Kianna Dy accounting for five aces and Desiree Cheng tallying four of her own.
"After ng game namin sa NU (National University), nakita ko na kaya namang maglakas ng serve, or kaya naman na makakuha ng ace," said La Salle coach Ramil de Jesus after their win, which took them an hour and 19 minutes.
"Sabi ko, gawin namin sa UP ito, and nag-work naman sa iba," he further explained.
La Salle set the tone in the opening set, with 16 attacks and five service aces. Their net defense then clicked in the second set, and they also continued to target the weak points in UP's reception.
The Lady Spikers' unforced errors helped UP surge to a 10-6 lead in the third frame, but that lead soon disappeared amidst the Lady Maroons' own miscues a well as attacks by Dy and La Salle skipper Majoy Baron. The defending champions would go on to lead 18-15, before UP made a last-ditch rally.
A poor serve by Baron, followed by an ace by Isa Molde made it a one-point game, 18-17, and the Lady Maroons had a golden opportunity to tie the game when La Salle fumbled its first ball in the next rally. Unfortunately for UP, an overzealous Tots Carlos touched the net while trying to pounce on the free ball, swinging the momentum back to La Salle.
The Lady Spikers cruised from there, handing UP its sixth loss of the win against only three victories.
"Naging organized ang blocking namin, and ang floor defense, nag-work," de Jesus observed of his team. "At the same time, magandan ang naging services ng team."
Dy and Cheng each finished with 14 points to lead the now 7-2 Lady Spikers.
Carlos had 16 points and Molde finished with 10, but UP was simply undone by its poor service reception.
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