In their last elimination round match, the Lady Spikers absorbed its first loss of the season today as they fall to the UST Tigresses 25-23, 20-25, 28-26, 16-25, 12-15. Despite this setback, the team still remains on top of the standings and will have the twice-to-beat advantage in the semis.
Nice game, UST deserved the win because they were steadier in the endgame. Some uncertainty crept into the Lady Spikers’ game, and that resulted in their play being less sharp and aggressive as they were in the past. Not to take anything away from UST, but those last 2 service reception errors were definitely unforced errors, balls which our team should have fielded cleanly. And the serve continued to be a double edged sword, netting us some quick points but also giving some away, but what hurt was that they occurred in the 4th and 5th sets. Perhaps the team just wanted the win too much. That loss was a bump on the road to the championship.
To the team: keep your eyes on the ultimate goal, the championship. The game today was effectively a no-bearing game, so nothing was really lost. Remember, a clean sweep of the elimination rounds will not make any change in the F4, it’s still a 1-4 and 2-3 pairing with the 1st and 2nd placed teams toting a twice to beat advantage. For today, however, UST has bragging rights. But only for today.
However, UST had to play its best just to eke out a 5-set victory. A review of the game tapes will be a good exercise in scouting the probable finals opponents. The coaches and players will definitely learn from the loss.
However, there’s still a game to win on Saturday before they can concentrate on the finals. Adamson is the lone barrier to getting to the finals, and the Lady Spikers should dispatch them next weekend.
Note: The Green Spikers likewise lost their game today against Ateneo. They will have a playoff match with UP for the last slot in the Final 4.