After loss to UST, La Salle vents ire on Ateneo

DEFENDING champion De La Salle University vented its frustrations on archrival Ateneo de Manila University, 25-12, 25-22, 25-19, for a bounce-back win in the UAAP Season 86 Women’s Volleyball Tournament at the SM Mall of Asia Arena, Saturday.

The Lady Spikers stumbled in their last game against University of Santo Tomas, losing in five sets, but are now back in the win column to improve to 3-1, tied with National University for second, just behind the undefeated Golden Tigresses.

Ateneo has not defeated La Salle since scoring a 12-25, 25-20, 25-21, 25-19 second round triumph on April 8, 2017.

“After nung loss namin sa UST, hindi ko naman sila kinagalitan, basta kinausap ko lang sila na kailangan mas matuto sila sa pagkakamali namin,“ said La Salle head coach Ramil de Jesus.

“Kailangan kung ano yung mali natin, maayos natin sa game natin sa Ateneo which is nakita ko naman, naadjust naman yung mga mistakes namin at kahit papaano nagawa namin nang tama,” added the 12-time champion coach.

The Lady Spikers encountered shaky moments in the second as the Blue Eagles stuck with them until the latter parts, 22-all, but an error by Geezel Tsunashima coupled with a Shevana Laput ace and an Angel Canino kill off the block gave them a 2-0 lead.

Then La Salle did not let the second set thriller happen again in the third, racing to a 16-8 advantage all the way to the finish in one hour and 18 minutes.

Thea Gagate led the Lady Spikers in scoring with 15 points on nine attacks, five blocks, and an ace to go with six digs, while Shevana Laput bounced back after a dismal display last game, tallying 13 points.

Reigning MVP Angel Canino rounded out La Salle’s double-digit scorers with 10 while Alleiah Malaluan and Julia Coronel chimed in eight and seven, respectively.

La Salle will look to build on this momentum when it matches up with University of the East on Wednesday.

The Blue Eagles, who were coming off a morale-boosting reverse sweep of University of the Philippines last Wednesday, fell to 1-3 at seventh.

Lyann de Guzman was the lone bright spot in the losing cause with 15 points, seven digs, and four excellent receptions.

Ateneo will seek to make the most of its six-day break before returning next Saturday against UST.