University of Perpetual Help System DALTA started off its three-peat bid in the NCAA Season 95 Men’s Volleyball Tournament on the right track, dousing the fire out of College of St. Benilde in emphatic fashion, 25-17, 25-15, 25-19, Friday at the FilOil Flying V Centre.
In a rematch of last year’s championship bout, the Altas wasted no time reminding the league of their dominance en route to their 14th consecutive win since 2018.
“I always tell my players that they are going to play for the school and the community. And it’s very hard kasi na defending champion ka to maintain the championship so sabi ko lang sa kanila na ensayado tayo, well prepared tayo,” Perpetual head coach Sammy Acaylar said as his side moves on from back-to-back MVP Almodiel, who was assessed of conduct detrimental to the team.
St. Benilde had no answers for Perpetual’s offensive thrust, particularly Acaylar’s trick under his sleeve — Louie Ramirez, whom he converted from middle blocker to outside hitter.
The second-year spiker put up a game-high 18 points, raining down on St. Benilde’s defense with 17 attacks.
“I always prepare naman bawat isang player. For example open spiker, outside spiker, may handa ako doon eh,” the veteran mentor added.
Rookie Kennry Malinis made quite a first impression in the grand old league. He tallied 11 markers built on eight attacks and two aces, lacing his offensive outing with nine excellent digs.
Altas skipper Ronniel Rosales also dealt damage with 11 points. First-year spiker Hero Austria also made his presence felt on his league debut, scattering seven markers, nine excellent digs, and 15 excellent receptions.
St. Benilde was led by Ruvince Abrot, the lone Blazer in twin-digit territory with 12 points. Goergie Guani and Joshua De Sequera each managed six markers.
The Altas shall next face the Letran Knights on Tuesday in a bid to keep their streak alive. Meanwhile, the Blazers aim for a breakthrough win when they take on the Mapua Cardinals on Monday. Both matches will be played at the same venue.