The University of the Philippines Lady Maroons remedied many of their lingering deficiencies and remain in the hunt for a Shakey’s V-League Open Conference playoff spot, dumping UAAP rivals National University Lady Bulldogs, 25-22 , 25-27, 25-13 , 25-22 at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig City.
After taking the first set handily, UP struggled out of the gate in the second frame and eventually fell behind 21-23. But late NU errors and hits from their wingers allowed the Lady Maroons to force a deuce. UP held a set point, but NU eventually rallied to take the set, thanks to attacks from Jaja Santiago and Jorelle Singh.
But the third and fourth set became drubbings, as NU’s ball control fell apart, allowing UP opportunities to vary their attacks. The Lady Maroons took a massive 16-9 lead in the third set, then an insurmountable 22-17 lead in the fourth, to seal the match.
“Siguro it was more of them (NU) still lacking the gelling and adjusting to their new setter. But I thought we executed better this time around even though may mga problems pa rin with our first ball we need to address,” said UP head coach Jerry Yee.
UP super sophomore Diana Carlos poured in 22 points built on 14 attacks, six blocks, and two aces. Isa Molde added 16 markers, while Kathy Bersola and Justine Dorog had 14 apiece.
Jaja Santiago led the Lady Bulldogs with 19 points, while Risa Sato and Jorelle Singh each managed 12.
UP (3-3) will play a do-or-die match against the Laoag Power Smashers (3-3) on Monday at the PhilSports Arena. NU end their season with a 3-4 slate.
NU (1) – Santiago 19, Sato 12, Singh 12, Urdas 6, Paran 4, Nabor 3, Doromal 1, Valdez (L), Chavez (L)
UP (3) – Carlos 22, Molde 16, Bersola 14, Dorog 14, Tiamzon 6, Basarte 2, Gaiser (L), Estrañero (L)