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National U outmuscle Adamson for first win



With their chemistry questioned in their opening match, the National University Lady Bulldogs pulled together just in time to overwhelm the Adamson University Lady Falcons 17-25, 25-20, 25-20, 25-20 for their first win in the UAAP Women’s Volleyball Tournament at the PhilSports Arena, earlier Saturday evening.

NU head coach Roger Gorayeb rued the inconsistent play of his setters in their loss to the Ateneo Lady Eagles. In the first set, NU could not execute Gorayeb’s mandate of constantly feeding Jaja Santiago. Adamson easily soared to an early lead, 9-3, and proceeded to keep bombarding the Lady Bulldogs to submission.

Needing to catch up again, NU’s reception and playmaking improved in the following sets. Rookie setter Rica Diolan distributed NU’s attacks splendidly, making sure that they had a steady stream of Santiago attacks with stabs from the wing hitters sprinkled in.

NU popped to huge early leads in the last three sets and halted any AdU attempt at climbing back. The Lady Bulldogs led by as much eight, 16-8, in the second set and nine in the third set, 17-8. The Lady Falcons managed to get as close as four in each instance through Jemma Galanza’s attacking, but NU adjusted and handily won the set.

The Lady Bulldogs seemed primed to blow the Lady Falcons away in the fourth frame, leading 8-2. Adamson, however, had one more comeback in them. With NU momentarily surrendering errors, Adamson got as close as two points, 12-14. But the Lady Falcons could not sustain the run and allowed NU to rebuild their lead, 18-12, and cruise to the win.

The 6’5″ middle blocker Jaja Santiago led all scorers with 20 points on 18 attacks, a block, and an ace. Open hitter Myla Pablo and Jorelle Singh had 13 and 11 points respectively.

“Advantage namin sa lahat ng team si Jaja. 6’5” yan, wala naman makakaabot sa kanya. Kaya sabi ko sa team, kailangan natin siya ma-maximize para mas dumali ‘yung buhay nating lahat. Salamat at nagawa naman namin,” Gorayeb said after the match.

Galanza towed the Lady Falcons with 17 points. Open hitter May Roque tallied 12 points, while team captain Mylene Paat and second year middle blocker Joy Dacoron had 11 points apiece.

National University (1-1) next take on the DLSU Lady Spikers (2-0) on Wednesday, 2 p.m. at the Mall of Asia Arena. Adamson (1-1) also have DLSU on Saturday, 4 p.m. at the FilOil Flying V Centre.

The Scores
NU (3) – Santiago 20, Pablo 13, Singh 11, Urdas 5, Diolan 2, Doria 2, Perez 0, General (L), Valdez (L)
AdU (1) – Galanza 17, Roque 12, Dacoron 11, Paat 11, Emnas 5, Alkuino 3, Flora 2, Momo 0, Joaquin 0, Mohammad 0, Tempiatura (L), Lebumfacil (L)


Miguel Luis Flores fell face first into sports writing in high sch9l and has never gotten up. He reluctantly stumbled into the volleyball beat when he started with Tiebreaker Times three years ago. Now, he has waded through everything volleyball - from its icky politics to the post-modern art that is Jia Morado's setting.

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Calvin Abueva, Raymond Almazan cut from pool



SMART Gilas Pilipinas’ third session for the second leg of the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers ended early on Monday evening.

Prior to the end of the practice, head coach Chot Reyes talked to team veterans Jayson Castro, Gabe Norwood, and June Mar Fajardo. The outspoken mentor told the seniors of the team that he is cutting Calvin Abueva and Raymond Almazan from the pool.

“The reason why we’re dropping Abueva and Almazan for the second window is because they haven’t showed up,” lamented Reyes.

“It’s already our third practice at hindi pa sila nagpapakita. It’s simply a matter of disinterest.

“I guess they’re not interested so we have to move on we can’t wait for those guys,” he pointed out.

Both Abueva and Almazan were part of the teams that competed in the 2017 SEABA Championship, the 2017 FIBA Asia Cup, and the first window of the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers.

Only 10 players from the pool showed up for the team’s third session. And with the second leg exactly one month away, Gilas cannot let a slip up happen especially against Australia.

“Aside from those two we don’t know where Matt Wright is, while Allein [Maliksi] is attending a wedding in Australia. Other than that it’s really just an issue of Calvin and Raymond if they don’t want to be a part of the pool.” expressed Reyes.

“That’s the reason we’re dropping them for the second window.”

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2019 FIBA World Cup Qualifiers

23 for 2023 cadets fill up Gilas practice



With just 31 days until the second window of the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers, only 10 players from the pool attended the team’s third session, Monday evening at the Meralco Gym.

Suiting up in the session presided over by Coach Chot Reyes were June Mar Fajardo, Gabe Norwood, Troy Rosario, Jio Jalalon, Mac Belo, Kiefer Ravena, Kevin Alas, and Roger Pogoy. Carl Cruz and Jayson Castro were in attendance but were in street clothes.

Not present were Matthew Wright, Japeth Aguilar, and Allein Maliksi. Calvin Abueva and Raymond Almazan have yet to attend practice.

Joining the seniors team to prep them up for the World Cup Qualifiers were 10 players from the 23 for 2023 pool.

Ateneo Blue Eagle Matt Nieto attended his first Gilas practice. Joining him were teammates Isaac Go and Thirdy Ravena.

Completing the night’s cast were CJ Perez, Abu Tratter, Will Gozum, J-jay Alejandro, Arvin Tolentino, and Juan Gomez de Liano. Joshua Sinclair watched from the sidelines as he is still recovering from an ACL injury.

Gilas will take on Australia in Melbourne on February 22. The Philippine will then host Japan three days later at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.

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San Beda fends off Letran for back-to-back wins



With seasoned setter John Carlo Desuyo steering the wheel to near perfection, the San Beda College romped to their second straight win.

The Red Spikers pulled double-digit outings from four players to upend archrival Colegio de San Juan de Letran Knights, 19-25, 25-13, 25-21, 25-22, and register their fourth win of the season, Monday early evening at the FilOil Flying V Centre.

It was the Knights, however, who started on the right foot, overhauling a 4-10 deficit to snag the first set. Better passing from liberos Aljune Centeno and Johnsen Timbreza resulted in kills from captain Bobby Gatdula.

Nonetheless, San Beda picked up the service game in the next three sets to ultimately finish off the blue-shirts.

Despite the win-loss record they currently sport, the Red Spiker playmaker admitted that t

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Michael Calisaan tows Che’lu-San Sebastian past Perpetual



Photo by PBA Images

Michael Calisaan poured 20 points as he captained newcomer Che’Lu-San Sebastian Revellers to a decisive 83-70 win over the University of Perpetual Help System DALTA Altas to start their voyage, Monday evening at the Pasig City Sports Center.

Doing it all for the Revellers, the veteran forward provided the stability for his side as he shot 8-of-15 from the field while also hauling down nine rebounds, two assists, and two steals in the conference-opening win.

But it wasn’t all Calisaan as Che’Lu got contributions from all over its roster.

Samboy de Leon chimed in 16 markers and nine boards. RK Ilagan went 2-of-5 from threes to collect 13 points, eight dimes, and three rebounds, while big men Alfred Batino and Jeepy Faundo combined for 20 in the victory.

Despite the triumph, coach Stevenson Tiu gave all the praise to his players, noting the team’s lack of time preparing for the tourney.

“Nanalo kami dahil sa talent ng players. Medyo mali ko rin kasi nahirapan pa ako mag-adjust sa players. Hopefully, we play much better in the coming games,” he said.

The Revellers used a 16-4 run to finally break away from the Altas, taking a 77-60 lead with 4:03 to play as they punished their foes for their turnovers, turning Perpetual’s 30 miscues to 28 points in their favor.

Prince Eze anchored the Altas with 15 points, 11 rebounds, and seven blocks in their first game under new head coach Frankie Lim.

Che’lu-San Sebastian look to make it two in a row when they take on the Wangs-Letran Couriers on Monday, January 29 at 5:00pm. Perpetual, on the other hand, hope they can notch their first win when they take on Mila’s Lechon Mighty Roasters.

The Scores:

Che’lu-SSCR 83 — Calisaan 20, De Leon 16, Ilagan 13, Batino 10, Faundo 10, Bulanadi 6, Costelo 6, Calma 2, David 0, Lao 0, Santos 0, Valdez 0.

UPHSD 70 — Eze 15, Coronel 13, Villanueva 13, Jimenez 9, Charcos 7, Peralta 7, Gallardo 5, Pido 1, Antonio 0, Aurin 0, Tamayo 0, Tongco 0.

Quarterscores: 17-22, 34-38, 59-53, 83-70.

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