The University of Santo Tomas Tiger Spikers dialed in another victory in their second round games against the FEU Tamaraws in a 25-21, 25-23, 25-22 win at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Mark Alfafara began the opening set with his big hits to lead UST. The Tiger Spikers denied all spurts of an FEU comeback, and finished the starting set strong with a 6-1 run.
The second set was off to a tight start as both teams exchanged leads several times. The Tamaraws led late at 20-18 and seemed poised to counter with a win in the second frame. However, the Tiger Spikers rallied with a 7-3 rampage late to steal it from the Tamaraws. Romnick Rico delivered four points in the run, in addition to a crucial Jason Sarabia service ace and a timely Patrick Balse free ball hit.
Four quick errors from FEU helped UST cruise to an early five-point lead in the third frame, with the score at 7-2. The Tiger Spikers took control from that point as they racked up consecutive points to keep FEU at bay. The Tamaraws managed to trim the deficit to three in the middle of the set but a service error halted a possible momentum shift.
After an unforced error, Sarabia and Alfafara scored with two consecutive blocks for UST. The Tiger Spikers installed an eight-point lead at 18-10 and a small set rally by FEU came too late as UST successfully completed the straight-set sweep. The reception of FEU was on par with the UST spikers but it was the Tigers Spikers’ net defense that spelled the difference.
UST dominated the attacking department with more spikes, 48-36 and had one more ace, 2-1. FEU’s seven blocks edged UST’s six but the Tamaraws’ three more errors (22-19) haunted their chance to steal at least a set.
FEU drops to 3-6 while UST improves to a 7-2 record. The Tiger Spikers look to continue their stellar performance as of late against Adamson, 8am at the FilOil Arena. On the other hand, the Tamaraws seek to improve their record against DLSU on Sunday, 10am also at the FilOil Arena in San Juan.
UST- Alfafara 14, Rico 13, Sarabia 10, Balse 9, Guzman 5, Bautista 2, Castillo 1, Arbasto 1, Tajanlangit 1, Lopez 0, Pangan(L) 0
FEU- Barrica 8, Paler 7, Camcam 6, Solis 5, Cayaban 5, Margate 3, Villegas 2, Gacutan 2, Dolor 2, Refugia 1, Marmeto(L) 0, Marmeto(L) 0
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