The College of Saint Benilde Blazers and San Sebastian College-Recoletos Golden Stags notched respective crucial wins as the NCAA Season 94 men’s volleyball tournament reaches its business end.
With four playing dates left, it is important for the six teams left in contention to get the needed wins to boost their Final Four bids.
In the day’s morning men’s match, the second-seeded Blazers bagged their sixth victory of the season en route to clinching at least a playoff for a semifinals berth after they shrugged off event hosts Jose Rizal University in four sets, 25-14, 25-21, 23-25, 25-19.
Ruvince Abrot paced the Taft-based squad with 14 points despite not playing the entire first set. Fellow wing spiker Roniey Adviento also skipped one set, but managed to end up with 12 markers.
Despite getting closer to their first goal, head coach Arnold Laniog stressed that they have not accomplished anything yet. “Well, one game at a time pa rin kami. Dapat mapanalo namin yung remaining games namin.”
It was actually the Bombers who took the edge on attacks at 46-45. Nonetheless, Benilde used their height advantage especially with a full front line as they finished the match with 15 blocks, 13 more than that of the Mandaluyong-based opponents.
Nevertheless, despite the slight deficit given up to JRU, Laniog would like to see his wards do what they do in a consistent basis. “Pinaka-importante is makita namin yung consistency ng percentage namin sa laro.”
Such consistency is needed as their next opponents in the Golden Stags played all heart past the San Beda University later in the afternoon. The Recto-based squad finished their cross-street neighbors in grueling five sets, 25-17, 27-29, 16-25, 25-23, 28-26.
Despite some controversial calls late in the fourth set and in the deciding set, it was the Stags which maintained their focus on the match and eventually closed the game despite some crucial mistakes in the latter part of the fifth. Robbie Pamittan continues his case for a possible Rookie of the Year award with a block and a kill to keep the Stags in the hunt for a semis berth, ultimately ending with 21 markers.
Winning the game against the Red Spikers, the Stags clinched its fourth win, but needs to upset the Blazers (6-1) on Thursday, January 10 at 3;30 pm in order to further boost their semis bid.
On the other hand, the Bombers (2-6) and the Red Spikers (2-5) will battle the Altas and the Arellano University Chiefs (6-1) next Thursday, January 17, and Tuesday, January 15, respectively.
CSB 3 – Abrot 14, Adviento 12, Basilan 11, De Sequera 10, Bacani 10, Magsino 4, Gauani 3, Daculan 1 Bautista 1, San Miguel 1, Almonte 0, Dy L , Dumaran L.
JRU 1 – Laxina 17, Miguel 12, Ausina 7, Legaspi 5, Salazar 5, Estacio 3, Cruz 1, Pulongbarit 0, Lahaylahay 0, Cebrero 0, Defensor L.
SSCR 3 – Pamittan 21, Eusebio 16, Bunsuan 15, Lana 11, Sanchez 9, De Guzman 3, Abulencia 1, Teodones 0, Andrade L.
SBU 2 – Losa 29, Torres 19, Amagan 16, Decano 14, Nursiddik 6, Lapurga 2, Estavillo 2, Daquil 1, Muallil 0, Ulibas 0, Tibay L, Rojas L.