Needing to win their last two games to get back to the Final Four, the University of Perpetual Help System DALTA Altas took the first step as they stopped the San Sebastian College-Recoletos Lady Stags in four, 25-19, 25-8, 18-25, 25-17, Monday afternoon at the FilOil Flying V Centre.
Perpetual head coach Michael Carino emphasized enough the nature of the next remaining elimination games for the Lady Altas saying, “Importante ‘yung last two games namin para makapasok sa kami sa semis.”
“Kailangan naming matalo at mabalikan ‘yung mga tumalo sa ‘min nung Final Four [last year],” he added.
The Lady Altas were more than up to the task as they cruised to a 2 sets to none advantage despite some early problems posted by the Lady Stags. Despite different players taking the court, Perpetual was able to hold their fort in the first two sets.
Nonetheless, spearheaded by graduating captain Joyce Sta, Rita, San Sebastian mounted a gallant stand and overpowered the Altas in the third.
That turned out to be the Lady Stags tribute to their middle hitter, as Perpetual was able to regroup as the fiery Carino challenged his wards before that fourth set, and the team ultimately responded.
“Lahat nag-i-start sa pasa. Nagka-error dun and nagtuluy-tuloy,” the champion mentor shared on what went wrong in the third.
Carino and the rest of his coaching staff hopes that the Lady Altas would do better in their do-or-die match against event hosts Jose Rizal University on Thursday, January 17 at 12 pm.
“Kung importante ‘yung game ngayon, mas importante ‘yung sa Thursday. Kasi kung sino mananalo ‘dun, siya ang papasok sa semis. May two days pa naman kami, so kailangan lang naming ayusin ‘yung problema namin nung third set.”
Jowie Verzosa paced three scorers in double digits with 15 points, 14 coming from attacks and an ace. Cindy Imbo and Jenny Gaviola added 12 markers each.
San Sebastian, on the other hand, bid goodbye to Sta. Rita, who finished with eight points on her final NCAA game. Kamille Tan and Maryrhose Dapol finished with nine points apiece to lead the Stags.
In the second game, the College of Saint Benilde Ladu Blazers assured themselves of at least the second spot after dominating the Mapua University Lady Cardinals, 25-16, 25-11, 25-21.
The match lasted for just 57 minutes, but the warm up was extended to about double of the usual 10 minutes due to both teams wearing the wrong uniforms. With corrections made by both sides, the match eventually resumed as Rachel Austero and the Lady Blazers torching the Lady Cardinals in just three sets. The center attacker finished with 19 big points to lead the Taft-based side.
Saint Benilde ended the elimination round at 8-1, while Mapua ended up with 1-8.
With the record, the Lady Blazers are assured of either the twice-to-beat advantage or the semifinals bye.
A win from the San Beda University (7-1) over the Arellano University (8-0) tomorrow will bring us to the traditional Final Four and the ladies from Taft will finish as number 1 due to superior quotient over these aforementioned team.
Nonetheless, an elims sweep from the Lady Chiefs gets as to the stepladder semis, with the Legarda team getting the bye to the Finals and the Lady Blazers, the bye to the semifinals. San Beda and the winner of Perpetual-JRu game will battle it out first in the stepladder semifinals.
UPHSD 3 – Verzosa 15, Gaviola 12, Imbo 12, Tripoli 8, Umandal 6, Rosal 2, Llorente 2, Gual 0, Castillo 0, Padua 0, Suico 0, Scott 0, Dayao L, Sangalang L.
SSC-R 1 – Tan 9, Dapol 9, Sta, Rita 8, Dalisay 7, Requierme 6, Sison 2, santiago 1, Sarmiento 0, Oliveros 0, Arevalo 0, Carreon 0, Bermillo L.
CSB 3 – Austero 19, Pablo 12, Daguil 9, Umali 9, Miranda 8, Cui 4, Lim 0, Gamit 0, Torres L.
MU 0 – Barias 6, Morano 4, Bolandrina 4, magallanes 3, Fernandez 3, Sanchez 3, Alavarado 1, Magundayao 1, Gaudan 1, Sy 0, Cruz 0, Ortega L.
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