MANILA, Philippines – La Salle wasn’t going to let Ateneo pull the rug from under its feet another time.
The Lady Spikers, with renewed intensity, stopped the Lady Eagles, 23-25, 25-21, 26-24 and 25-18, Saturday in game two of the 74th UAAP Women’s Volleyball finals at the Arena in San Juan.
“The attitude is back,” said La Salle head coach Ramil De Jesus. “They were a little nice the last time. We’re not teaching [the girls] to be wild on the court but it’s important we bring the winning attitude on the court to boost the morale.”
The defending champions racked up three straight sets after failing to contain Ateneo in the opening set to move to within a win away of the title.
Game three is on Wednesday at 2 p.m. with the Lady Spikers having a chance to finish it despite losing the thrice-to-beat incentive for sweeping the eliminations.
It was all La Salle in the final set after pulling away early and staving off any Ateneo rally, with rookie Ara Galang finishing it off with back-to-back points.
Skipper Cha Cruz sealed the telling third set for La Salle with a kill following two crucial errors by Ateneo on the other end.
“The third set proved crucial, I felt the one who won that set would win the game,” added De Jesus.
The fiery Michelle Gumabao led La Salle with a 18 points while Cruz and Galang added 12 points apiece.
Earlier, Abigail Maraño was adjudged as the season’s Most Valuable Player while Galang bagged the Rookie of the Year award.
In the men’s volleyball finals, Far Eastern University stunned University of Santo Tomas in straight sets, 25-20, 25-21, and 25-22.
Star spiker Rodolfo Labrador Jr. had 24 points in leading the Tamaraws to just a win away from the title as they limited the Tigers’ Jayson Ramos to just four measly points.
Ramos was earlier awarded the season MVP while Labrador received the Best Scorer award.