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ADMU

Ateneo Lady Eagles inch closer to twice-to-beat after dispatching NU


The Ateneo De Manila University Lady Eagles stepped closer to becoming the top team in the UAAP Season 81 Women’s Volleyball tournament.

With a clash with their perennial rivals on the horizon, Ateneo built momentum with a rousing four-set win over the National University Lady Bulldogs, 25-14, 24-26, 25-17, 25-19, at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

The Lady Eagles dominated the first set, building a 19-9 lead. NU then picked up steam late in the second set, forcing a deuce and going to rookie Ivy Lacsina to seal the set win.

But Ateneo’s blocking got the best of National U in the third set, as the Lady Eagles collected block kills and NU errors en route to a decisive 21-15 lead. NU tried to keep the fourth set close, coming within two, 20-18, before they gave up errors that propelled Ateneo to their 10th consecutive win.

Having clinched a Final Four spot with their last win, Ateneo head coach Oliver Almadro emphasized the importance of continued improvement to get them through the long haul.

“We can’t be complacent kasi we’re still looking forward. What’s important for us now is to be better and to be ready for future challenges,” said Almadro.

“We still have a lot to improve. There’s still a lot of time between now and where we want to be, so we really can’t be complacent,” the decorated head coach added.

Four Lady Eagles scored in double-digits with Kat Tolentino and Jules Samonte each managing 13 points. Maddie Madayag added 12 points, which includes five blocks. Bea De Leon and Ponggay Gaston provided 10 markers, apiece.

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The Lady Eagles have clinched a postseason appearance for the 10th season in a row.

Rookies Princess Robles and Ivy Lacsina topped the also-ran Lady Bulldogs with 13 points.

The Lady Eagles (10-1) take on the De La Salle University Lady Spikers (8-3), the team that beat them on opening weekend, on Saturday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. Meanwhile, NU (3-8) face the Far Eastern University Lady Tamaraws (7-4) on Wednesday at the FilOil Flying V Centre.


The Scores

ADMU (3) – Samonte 13, Tolentino 13, Madayag 12, De Leon 10, Gaston 10, Raagas 2, Delos Reyes 0, Gandler 0, Maraguinot 0, Wong 0, Gequillana (L)

NU (1) – Lacsina 13, Robles 13, Doria 7, Luceño 7, Paran 6, Chavez 4, Landicho 1, Orillaneda 0, Nierva (L)

Written By

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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