After a disappointing loss to their UAAP arch rivals, Ateneo, the De La Salle Green Spikers earned their first victory in the Spikers’ Turf Collegiate Conference at the expense of the Arellano University Chiefs 25-17, 25-22, 25-12 at the FilOil Flying-V Arena.
Showing incremental improvements from the last season’s controversial team, the Green Spikers outclassed their foes from the NCAA in every measurable skill. Defense, which was a problem last season for DLSU, came easily for the squad from Taft as they had no problem with their opponents floundering offense. The Chiefs surrendered a massive nine errors per set, cutting the match time to just under an hour.
Sophomore, Arjay Onia played his best match on La Salle’s first win in two matches. Onia topped his team with 12 markers, while Raymark Woo, who just returned from an ACL tear that sideline him for the entire UAAP Season 77, continued his marvelous play in the tournament with 11 points.
La Salle Coach, Ronald Dulay revealed after the match that despite his team’s relative youth, he is much more comfortable in this year’s team overall structure. “Karamihan ng players ko ngayon mga bata pa, rookie pati mga second year, kaya mas madali silang sabihan at mas nakikinig sila sa mga sinasabi sa kanila sa ensayo. Kumpara sa team last year, mas buo ‘tong team na ‘to. Mas matibay ‘yung samahan ng mga bata,” expressed Dulay whose team just came from a dismal showing in the UAAP. Establishing a reputation as perennial Final Four contenders, DLSU suddenly dropped off last season. Marred by internal issues with the team’s veterans, La Salle struggled to sixth place.
Both DLSU and AU hit the court again July 29, Thursday with the Spikers’ facing off with their sister school, DLSU-Dasmarinas and AU trying for their first win against the CSB Blazers.
DLSU (3) – Onia 12, Woo 11, Calasin 9, Del Pilar 7, Dumago 3, Dimayuga 3, Asia 2, Bacon 1, Marco 0, Jose 0, Frey 0, Asia R. (L), Movido (L)
AU (0) – Latip 14, Segovia 7, Del Espiritu 7, Aliyacyac 4, Lozada 4, Soriano 1, Santo 0, Delapaz 0, Sarino 0, Dela Cruz (L)