After spending almost the past decade as rivals, University of Santo Tomas’ two aces and some of National University’s brightest stars are now on the same team.
Over the weekend, Chery Tiggo announced a massive signing spree, acquiring Jennifer Nierva, Cess Robles, and Joyme Cagande from the Lady Bulldogs, and Imee Hernandez and Eya Laure from the Golden Tigresses.
Laure and Hernandez had numerous battles with Nierva, Robles, and Cagande in both the Juniors and Seniors divisions of the UAAP. Now, they’re teaming up to bolster Mylene Paat and the rest of the Crossovers for the upcoming PVL Invitational in June.
In her final year with the Golden Tigresses, the ‘Queen Tiger’ emerged as the top scorer with a total of 283 points from 242 spikes, 28 blocks, and service aces. She averaged 18.86 points per game with an efficiency of 38.17 percent, ranking third in the league.
Laure also finished fourth in blocks with 0.48 per set and eighth in digs with 2.21 per frame in Season 85, while her teammate Hernandez averaged 11.4 points per game for UST and placed fifth in blocking with 0.45 per set.
Robles, who suffered a right knee injury in the middle of the season, averaged 6.75 points per outing for the Lady Bulldogs.
Nierva, the Season 84 Best Libero, ranked second in receiving with an efficiency of 50.59 percent and sixth in digging with 2.9 per set.
Lastly, Cagande, despite serving as NU’s backup setter, managed to enter the top 10 with 0.85 sets per frame.
The quintet joins a Chery Tiggo team that missed the semifinals in three of the last four conferences after winning the first-ever professional championship in the 2021 Open Conference in Ilocos Norte.