La Salle overcomes sluggish start to remain undefeated

De La Salle University stretched its unbeaten run to four after sweeping University of the East, 25-20, 25-21, 25-14, in the UAAP Season 85 women’s volleyball tournament Wednesday at the SMART Araneta Coliseum.

The Lady Warriors showed grit in the early parts of the first two sets but the Lady Spikers were just too poised, leaving their foes in crunch time.

UE trailed by just three late in the first, 18-21, while even grabbing a 4-0 lead in the second but De La Salle was able to finish the job on both occasions.

Despite the straight-set romp, Lady Spikers interim head coach Noel Orcullo, reminding his troops to show respect to their last-place foes, lamented the slow start.

“Actually, we started slow. Masyado kaming nagkampante. First two sets parang sinasabayan lang yung laro ng kalaban so hindi kami nagstick doon sa game plan namin,” said Orcullo.

In the third frame, De La Salle did not leave anything to chance by racing to a 15-6 dominant start.

Thea Gagate towered for the Lady Spikers with 13 points on eight attacks and five blocks, while rookie Angel Canino had 10 points, eight excellent receptions, and seven digs.

Jolina Dela Cruz got nine points, Jyne Soreño added seven points, and Em Provido produced six points off the bench.

Despite UE winning the spiking department by 10, 40-30, it was in the blocking and service categories where De La Salle dominated, 15-2 and 8-1, respectively.