The University of the Philippines Lady Maroons avoided being on the wrong side of an upset, recovering just in time to quell the Collegio San Agustin-Binan Golden Eagles, 25-6, 21-25, 25-16, 25-22, in the Philippine Superliga Collegiate Grand Slam at the Alonte Sports Center.
Dominant in the first set, UP failed to retain momentum as their second six fell behind 11-16 in the second frame. The Lady Maroons’ veteran players could not save them late in the set, as CSA took advantage of inconsistent UP floor defense.
UP then dropped six aces in the third set alone to quickly gain a 2-1 sets edge. CSA winger Aliah Marce kept her squad in the fourth frame, highlighting her best performance of the match with a hit past two blockers that sliced UP’s lead down to one, 18-17. From there, UP’s middle blockers Marist Layug and Aie Gannaban provided the late blows. The pair scored four of UP’s next seven points and closed the match..
UP head coach Godfrey Okumu was not pleased with the overall effort on floor defense from his team.
“They (CSA) played good volleyball. We cannot say that they’re a bad team, they’re a good team. Like with every other team, we have to watch out,” said the Kenyan mentor. “They wanted to win more than us. We thought the game was going to be easy. But, it’s good for our player to learn to take pressure from every game they play.”
UP rookie Nikki Magsarile topped all scorers with 15 points while fourth year open hitter Justine Dorog tallied 14.
Marce finished with 13 markers, while Lency Duarte added 10.
UP (2-0) next take on the Far Eastern University Lady Tanaraws (1-0) on November 24 at the Caloocan Sports Complex. CSA (0-2) aim for their first win also against FEU on December 1, also at the Caloocan Sports Complex.
UP (3) – Magsarile 15, Dorog 14, Gannaban 11, Layug 10, Carlos 9, Sotomil 6, Sandoval 5, Bernardo 2, Ramos 2, Lagman 1, Osorio 0, Bautista (L), Siao (L)
CSA (1) – Marce 13, Duarte 10, Torres 7, Flores 5, Rivera 3, Puzon 1, Alfaro 0, Duran 0, Hammond 0, Lacambra 0, De Leon (L), Delos Santos (L)