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A win away

  • Written by Theodore P. Jurado
  • Published in Volleyball
  • Read: 317

Games tomorrow:

(Philsports Arena)

4 p.m. -- UP vs NU (V-League  semis)

6 p.m. --  FEU vs Ateneo  (V-League  semis)

ON the  ropes in the eliminations and in  the quarterfinals, Ateneo is just a win away in making it to the Shakey’s V-League Collegiate Conference Finals.

The Lady Eagles showed steely resolve in the second and third set to  beat Far Eastern University, 25-14, 28-26, 25-22, in the semifinals opener yesterday at the Philsports Arena.

Michelle Morente and Bea de Leon came through with 13 points apiece while Kim Gequillana added 12, including the match-clinching hit that gave Ateneo a 1-0 lead in the best-of-three series.
   
Eyeing for their fifth Collegiate Conference championship appearance in the last six years and the first in the post-Alyssa Valdez era, the Lady Eagles seek to close it out in Game 2 slated at 6 p.m. tomorrow.
   
“We are taking things one game at a time,” said Gequillana, who also had two blocks and two service aces.
     
Displaying its ‘heartstrong’ mantra to the hilt, Ateneo won three do-or-die games in the preliminaries to avoid early elimination and defeated San Sebastian in a no-tomorrow playoff last weekend to advance in the Final Four.
   
The Lady Tamaraws, who topped the elims and quarters, were never been the same without Bernadeth Pons, who sat out due to a hurting left ankle. 
   
Heather Guino-o, who took the starting position from Pons, led FEU with 11 points and five digs while Toni Rose Basas added 10 markers.
   
After a dominating opening set performance, the Lady Eagles had a close shave in the second frame after Lady Tamaraws setter Angel Cayuna committed a service error to break a 26-26 standoff, followed by a drop shot by Ana Gopico.
   
Earlier, defending champion Ateneo survived a first-set scare then imposed its will and power in the next two to sweep La Salle 26-24, 25-19, 25-17,  and arrange a Finals rematch with National University in the Spikers’ Turf Collegiate Conference.
   
Marck Espejo soared high anew on Ish Polvorosa’s set plays, converting 16 of 22 attempts to finish with 24 points while Rex Intal went perfect 7-of-7 on spikes as the Blue Eagles fashioned out the straight-set win following a scrambling 25-16, 17-25, 25-23, 26-28, 15-7 victory over the Green Spikers in the opener of their best-of-three semifinal series over the weekend.
     
The Bulldogs trounced University of Santo Tomas, 25-19, 25-18, 25-21, to dominate their side of the Final Four.
   
Ateneo and NU begin their best-of-three titular showdown on Wednesday, with the Bulldogs eyeing to get even with the Eagles.