By: Justine Anne Gaerlan
Led by a dominant performance from middle blocker Mary Grace Del Moral, Adamson University sustained its unbeaten streak in the UAAP Season 86 Girls’ High School Volleyball Tournament by sweeping the listless University of the Philippines Integrated School, 25-8, 25-14, 25-18 on Saturday at the Adamson University Gym.
The third set saw the Fighting Maroons take an early lead, 5-1, until a string of errors allowed the Lady Baby Falcons to tie the game at 5-5.
From there, both squads exchanged scoring runs until Adamson went on a four-point streak capped off by a Mishka Estrada attack that brought them to match point.
After Kirsten Carpizo committed a service error, a soft hit from Estrada sealed the victory for the Lady Baby Falcons.
“For us, especially ngayong game, sa mga second six ko it’s a good experience for them na nakakalaro sila so that pagdating sa next game if ever na hindi maganda ‘yung nilalaro ng isa sa anim, at least nakaka-experience sila ngayon ng paglalaro at pagdating doon, hindi na sila kakabahan or maninibago because nga hindi sila pinapasok,” said Adamson head coach JP Yude, who is also the concurrent Lady Falcons head coach.
“Pero sa game ngayon, marami pang i-aadjust sa laro ng mga bata, and number one kasi kumbaga i-conquer nila ‘yung fear talaga nila, ‘yung takot na magkamali, takot sa paglalaro,” he added.
Meanwhile, FEU-Diliman continued its winning ways on the boys’ side with an easy 25-6, 25-17, 25-17 victory over UPIS to mark its fifth consecutive win.
After shaking off a sluggish second set, the Baby Tamaraws sprinted to an early lead in the third frame at 9-3.
Back-to-back errors from FEU-D trimmed the deficit to four until the Baby Tamaraws scored four points in a row to widen the gap to eight points.
The Fighting Maroons then went on a 6-1 run to cut the lead back to three points.
However, UPIS could not contain FEU-D’s late surge as Amet Bituin sparked a five-point run capped off by a pair of service aces, 23-14.
A service error from Terren Villanueva set FEU-D at match point before Japhet Casabar saved the Fighting Maroons a point. A Bituin attack ended the match, 25-17.
Later in the afternoon, stellar net defense propelled National University Nazareth School past Adamson, 25-19, 25-17, 25-16.
The Baby Falcons opened the third set with a two-point advantage before the Bullpups went on a commanding 8-0 run.
Down by 10 late in the set, Adamson went on a three-point run sealed by a service ace from Tommy Castrodes, but NUNS scored three of the last four points, including the attack from Matthew Abut that closed out the set, 25-16.
Both FEU and NUNS continued to share the second spot with identical 5-1 records.
UPIS dropped to seventh place with a 1-5 card, while Adamson remained in fourth place with an even 3-3 record.