The National University Bulldogs returned their roots and stopped the Far Eastern University Tamaraws in four sets, 25-21, 25-20, 21-25, 25-21, to send their 2018 Premier Volleyball League Collegiate Conference semifinals series to a winner-take-all Game Three, Sunday afternoon at the FilOil Flying V Centre.
Outside hitter Bryan Bagunas was unstoppable in his second straight match back from a beach volley tournament stint, finishing with a huge 30-point outing, 27 of which came from booming attacks. The senior NU standout also added two blocks, an ace, along with 15 excellent receptions to lord the stat sheets. Middle hitters Kim Malabunga and team captain Francis Saura were also aggressive at the net to end with 15 and 13 markers, respectively.
For coach Dong Dela Cruz – who has been sitting in for head coach Dante Alinsunurin for the past two matches – believed that it was the team’s complacency that cost them the opening game. “Masyado nilang inisip na kaya namin yung kalaban,” he admitted. “Ngayon mas ginusto naming manalo.”
The Banko Perlas head coach added, “Maganda yung blocking namin at service reception ngayon. Sana sa Game Three gumana ulit.”
Dominating the scoring skills, the composure of the Bulldogs prevailed in the end, even after that third-set loss. In that frame, the Tamaraws took advantage of their opponent’s faulty connections to pull away early, and never looked back. JP Bugaoan and RJ Paler poured in majority of their respective 13 and 16 points to pocket the third.
In the fourth set, NU’s determination was evident, as they drilled in their spikes with much power, punctuated with another Saura kill to end the match.
The sudden death match between National U and FEU is scheduled on Wednesday. The winner will face the University of Santo Tomas Tiger Spikers in the Finals, while the losing squad takes on the Adamson University Soaring Falcons in the third-place series.
NU 3 – Bagunas 30, Malabunga 15, Saura 13, Almedras 9, Gampong 6, Natividad 3, Dayandante 1, Ancheta 0, Marcos L, Sumagui L.
FEU 1 – Paler 16, Bugaoan 13, De Asis 9, Quiel 7, Bautista 7, Calado 5, Silang 1, Suarez 1, Salabsab 0, Laganina 0, Barrica L, Lorenzo L.
Seeing Joshua Pacio downcast motivates Geje Eustaquio even more
Macky Cariño looking to make history with Perpetual Lady Altas
Minor setback serves as wake up call to Regine Arocha, Arellano
Amid ‘underhanded tactics’, Wilfred Uytengsu proud to see Alaska win with integrity
Kai Sotto tops FIBA’s list of Asian U18 prospects
PBA Season 43 Leo Awards, Season 44 opening to be held in Philippine Arena
SOURCES: Norman Miguel set to take coaching reins of NU Lady Bulldogs
Two championships load up pressure on UP Lady Maroons
Perpetual guts out tight finish against top seed Benilde, forces rubber match
Rejuvenated Regine Arocha leads Arellano Lady Chiefs back to Finals
Young EAC Generals shock Arellano Chiefs, advance to semis
San Miguel Alab overwhelms Macau for 7th win
- Basketball4 days ago
Chooks-to-Go still gives Paul Desiderio own branch
- News3 days ago
Phoenix’s LA Revilla, Petron’s Denden Lazaro announce engagement
- ADMU2 days ago
Studies First: Nietos, two other Blue Eagles arrive late for PCCL semis clash
- Basketball5 days ago
San Miguel responds to Alex Compton’s statement: ‘Each PBA team has a responsibility to form formidable squad’