La Salle regains UAAP women’s tennis crown from USTBy Celest R. Flores
MANILA, Philippines – La Salle reclaimed the women’s tennis throne in UAAP season 75 with a 3-2 squeaker of a win over University of Santo Tomas Thursday at the Rizal Memorial Tennis Center.
The Lady Archers leaned on veteran Martina Guba in the deciding singles to hammer out a 7-5, 6-0 victory, over Tigresses rookie Lenelyn Milo, which completed their bid for a seventh overall title.
Reggie Santiago set the tone for the Lady Archers with a 6-3, 6-1 thumping of Len-len Santos in the opening singles, before the Tigresses answered with a 6-1, 6-2 win of Diane Bautista and Jhie Helar over Lynette Palasan and Aira Putiz in the first doubles.
Santiago was adjudged as the tournament MVP anew, but on her final year.
“She is more than deserving to win the MVP award. In her whole UAAP career, she is undefeated,” said La Salle coach Taddy Cruz of Santiago.
Rookie of the Year winner Marinel Rudas beat Season 74 MVP Macy Gonzales, 6-1, 6-3, in the second singles for La Salle to regain the upper hand, but UST pulled one back as Zaza Paulino and April Santos subdued Princess Castillo and Nikki Arandia, 6-3, 6-2, in the second doubles.
Guba, also playing in her final season, then, finished the job for the Lady Archers.”
“Hopefully we get new recruits to replace to two losses (Guba and Santiago). We have plus we need to step up our double tandems. We will try to make more balanced next season,” Cruz added.