Nearing the end of the UAAP Season 81 Men’s Volleyball Tournament’s elims, the Ateneo de Manila University Blue Eagles stayed hot, taking a four-set triumph over the University of the East Red Warriors, 25-20, 25-12, 27-29, 25-15, at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Ateneo improved their record to 9-4, tied with Adamson University and two games behind Far Eastern University (9-2) for the second seed and a twice-to-beat advantage.
“We’d love to have the second seed, but that’s pretty much out of our hands,” explained Ateneo’s graduating opposite hitter Tony Koyfman. The 6-foot-8 American tallied a game-high 17 points.
“For now, we just want to focus on getting better on the way to the Final Four. We have to really limit our errors and sharpen the rest of our skills,” he added.
Ron Medalla added 12 markers, while Gian Glorioso managed 11 to pace the Blue Eagles.
UE rookie open hitter Al-John Abalom suffered a knee injury in the fourth set and had to be carried off the court. He finished with seven points.
Noel Alba led the Red Warriors with 11 points, while Clifford Inoferio managed seven.
Ateneo take on Adamson in the final day of the elimination round on April 28. Meanwhile, UE (2-11) face University of Santo Tomas (4-8) on April 27. Both matches will be played at the FilOil Flying V Centre.
ADMU (3) – Koyfman 17, Medalla 12, Glorioso 11, Njigha 9, Rivera 9, Llenos 2, Morado 2, Tan 2, Magadia 1, Aguilar 0, Cuerva 0, Morado 0, Sumanguid (L)
UE (1) – Alba 11, Ortega 9, Abalon 7, Inoferio 7, Josafat 6, Bonoan 3, Reyes 1, Adriano 0, Ernacio 0, Medina (L), Solis (L)