The Ateneo de Manila University Lady Eagles continued their mastery over the University of Santo Tomas Golden Tigresses with a 25-10, 26-24, 28-26 triumph, Wednesday afternoon at the FilOil Flying V Centre.
Like their first round encounter, the Lady Eagles showed composure and killer instinct in crucial moments to seal another straight-set win over their España-based opponents.
Having peppered UST with aces in the opening set, the Lady Eagles fought for a 22-18 second-set lead. From there, UST mounted their best stretch of the match, claiming the next six points off solid transitions to take set point, 24-22. But the Tigresses floundered, giving up the next four points, highlighted by a Jia Morado ace to end the set.
In the third set, Ateneo seemed to have the match in hand after establishing a 24-19 cushion. It was then UST’s turn to stay alive. Off solid serving from Tin Francisco, the Tigresses gained a shot at set point, 25-24. But the veteran Lady Eagles turned the tides with crucial aces from Ana Gopico then Micelle Morente to cap the match.
“Siyempre gusto mong ‘wag nang umabot sa ganoon [makahabol ‘yung kalaban]. Pero siyempre, lumalaban ‘yung kalaban so hindi mo naman pwede i-expect na hindi sila hahabol. Maganda kasi nakita mo ‘yung paglaban nang mga players. Pero, siyempre, mas gusto naming hindi na umabot sa ganoon,” said Ateneo head coach Sherwin Meneses.
Jhoana Maraguinot and Bea De Leon each pumped in 12 points. Kat Tolentino and Michelle Morente added 11 and 10 markers, respectively to lead the Loyola-based spikers.
Ateneo maintain hold of the top seed with an 8-1 record. They face the Far Eastern University Lady Tamaraws (5-4) on Saturday at the FilOil Flying V Centre.
Cherry Rondina led UST with 14 points. The Tigresses kept pace with the Lady Eagles in every scoring skill except in serving, as Ateneo had 14 while UST had just five.
UST (5-4) face the Adamson University Lady Falcons, also on Saturday.
ADMU (3) – De Leon 12, Morado 12, Tolentino 11, Morente 10, Gopico 5, Morado 3, Madayag 2, Gequillana 1, Tan (L)
UST (0) – Rondina 14, Laure 9, Meneses 8, Cortez 5, Pacres 3, Palec 2, Cabanos 1, Francisco 1, Bicar 0, Lastimosa 0, Sandoval 0, Rasmo (L), Rivera (L)