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UAAP 86 Badminton: Ateneo, NU dispose of DLSU, UST, book Final Four tickets


ATENEO de Manila University and National University secured the first two spots in the UAAP Season 86 Women’s Badminton Final Four in a similar fashion on Saturday at the Centro Atletico Badminton Center.

Ateneo scored a 4-1 win over archrival De La Salle University while NU fashioned a 4-1 triumph over University of Santo Tomas.

The Blue Eagles and the Lady Bulldogs are level at the top with 3-0 win-loss records and will dispute the solo lead on Sunday at 1 p.m. in the same Cubao venue.

Ateneo, the back-to-back defending champion, extended its winning streak to 20 with Mika De Guzman and Jochelle Alvarez wrapping up their tie with the Lady Shuttlers in the second doubles match against Coleen Dedicatoria and Shayne Boloron, 21-14, 21-7.

“Regarding the win, the team is, of course, very happy. But we will still do our best kasi sa mga next matches, maraming mas magcha-challenge sa ‘min. We will always try to do better sa mga next games,” Ateneo assistant coach Fides Bagasbas said.

De Guzman — the Philippines’ no. 2 women’s singles player — and Alvarez earlier won their singles matches, putting the Blue Eagles in a commanding 2-0 lead.

De Guzman made quick work of Lady Tuario, 21-10, 21-9, and Alvarez turned down Ghiselle Bautista, 21-13, 21-11.

The Lady Shuttlers secured one match with Palma Cruz and Mia Manguilimotan narrowly defeating Missy Alvarez and Maxene Olango, 21-17, 21-19, but rookie Angel Valle closed it for Ateneo with a 21-10, 21-15 victory over Viana Antonio in the final singles rubber.

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On the other hand, the Lady Bulldogs saw the country’s third-ranked doubles pair of Gwyneth Desacola and Jeya Pinlac secure their place in the semifinals with a 21-18, 21-17 win over Patricia De Leon and Marielle Alvarez in the second doubles match.

“Mas happy ako sa performance ng girls ngayon kasi lumabas talaga ‘yung laro nila. Nakuhanan kami ng first singles, pero good thing is ‘yung rest of the team did their job. Sana magtuluy-tuloy, especially sa laban namin bukas against Ateneo,” NU head coach Jaime Llanes said.

De Leon put the Tiger Shuttlers on the board with a 21-17, 13-21, 21-18 marathon victory over Yvonnie Dema-ano, but it was all UST could muster as Ysabel Amora secured a 21-10, 21-5 equalizing win over Sofia Ignacio. Sarah Barredo and Lee-Anne De Leon then denied Jennifer Saladaga and Rhafi Santos the first doubles rubber with a 21-15, 21-14 victory to set up their seniors’ heroics.

Last year’s runner-up University of the Philippines completed a 5-0 sweep of Adamson University to move up the standings with a 2-1 record.

The Fighting Maroons stayed in step with the leaders after Tricia Opon and Patricia De Dios wrapped up the victory with a solid 21-10, 21-18 win over Camille Buagas and Graziel Cabriga.

The other pairings on Sunday will have UP shooting for a Final Four berth when it faces DLSU, even as UST and Adamson take on each other for a breakthrough win.

Grew to appreciate various sports from tennis to judo. True-maroon kiddo since the new millennium. Fanboy. Singer. Occasional sports writer.


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