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Tiebreaker Times

Adamson takes advantage of incomplete Tiger Spikers squad, notches eighth win of the season

With UST players Paul Castillo, Romnick Rico and Patrick Balse out for UST due to disciplinary measures, the young Adamson Falcons squad took care of business with a four-set 23-25, 25-20, 25-20, 25-17 win over the Tiger Spikers at the FilOil Arena in San Juan.

UST spikers made noise early as they romped consecutive spikes to capture the lead. They led by as much as seven during the opening set as back-row attacks were on full display at the start. Trailing by five at 21-16, Adamson’s Bryan Saraza made his presence felt in his front row insertion with back-to-back crosscourt hits to trim the deficit.

Arnold Bautista scored on an off-the-block hit during a middle hit to extend the lead to four once again at 22-18. Looking to counter strong, rookie Jerome Sarmiento scored on crucial drop balls late to make it a 23-22 game. However, Adamson made a crucial error on reception and UST capitalized on the freeball given as the Tiger Spikers escaped with a close opening set win.

The Falcons played the game sharper as they looked like the Adamson squad which held the seven-game winning streak days ago. They forced UST to multiple errors and held a five-point lead early entering the first technical timeout of the second set.

Adamson also won the majority of the net jousts that helped them extend the lead to 12-5. With unforced errors plaguing UST, JC David completed a combination play to build a quick 10-point lead for the Falcons entering the second technical timeout. Mark Alfafara tried to pace the Tigers for a comeback but the errors just hindered their attempts at rallying back. The UST second-set loss was their first set loss of the second round.

UST started the third set on target as they pushed to a 4-1 lead. However, the young and confident Adamson squad managed to regain the lead and used an 8-3 run to dictate momentum once again. With the Falcons on target defense and combination plays working effectively, Adamson once again ran away late with a five-point third set win.

Armed with all sorts of momentum, Adamson jumped to another early lead against the rattled UST squad. The score was quickly doubled at 18-9 as the Falcons’ net and floor defense proved to be a headache for UST’s spikers. A mini-rally by UST came late as Adamson did enough to push towards their eighth win of the season.

With the win, Adamson improves to an 8-2 record and is now holding the solo second spot. On the other hand, the Tiger Spikers dropped to 7-3, tied with NU for third place.

The Adamson Falcons look to solidify their Final Four slot against FEU on Feb. 4, 8am at the FilOil Arena while UST looks to bounce back against the winless UE team on Feb. 7, 8am at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

The scores:
Adamson- Saraza 17, Sudaria 13, Pletado 12, Sarmiento 10, Ramirez 8, David 4, Mallapre 0, Pablico 0, Yude 0, Melgar(L) 0
UST- Alfafara 23, Saraiba 9, Guzman 7, Bautista 5, Arbasto 5, Buro 5, Francisco 2, Tajanlangit 1, Lopez 1

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