NCAA champion College of Saint Benilde and title contender Perpetual Help secured straight-set victories over Lyceum of the Philippines University and San Sebastian College, respectively, to join the University of the East and Far Eastern University at the top of the women’s division in the 2023 V-League Collegiate Challenge on Friday at Paco Arena.
The Lady Blazers held off the Lady Pirates in the first two sets before dominating their opponents in the third for a commanding 25-19, 25-20, 25-13 triumph. This match was a rematch of last year’s NCAA Season 98 Finals, held in this tournament organized by Sports Vision.
“We identified some bright spots and identified some issues that need to be worked out. Overall, we’re happy that we got the win and most of the team performed well,” said St. Benilde head coach Jerry Yee.
Middle blocker Zam Nolasco dominated at the net, contributing 12 points with nine spikes and three blocks. This included three consecutive hits during the Lady Blazers’ second-set pull-away.
Clydel Catarig and Corrine Apostol added eight points each for the Lady Blazers, who sealed the victory with a 5-1 run highlighted by Mich Gamit’s quick kills.
Similarly, the Lady Altas did not allow the Lady Stags to gain any momentum, securing a 25-18, 25-19, 25-19 victory in the other match of the tournament, also supported by Bola.TV, Beyond Active Wear, ASICS, and Mikasa.
Reigning NCAA MVP Mary Rose Dapol poured in 16 points during the hour-long battle, with 14 coming from attacks and two from service aces.
Charmaine Ocado also contributed 11 points throughout the match for Perpetual, while Winnie Bedaña added seven points in the middle.
The Lady Stags fought on with Kat Santos and Tina Marasigan, each accumulating nine points. Former University of the East setter Von Dimaculangan made her debut for San Sebastian.
The Lady Warriors and the Lady Tams had previously overcome Enderun Colleges and Mapua University with scores of 25-16, 25-16, 25-20, and 25-13, 25-18, 25-15, respectively.