MANILA, Philippines — Effective recruitment that started three years ago proved to be the key behind the National University Bulldogs’ first ever championship in the UAAP men’s volleyball division.
“Lahat ng magagaling sa highschool pintunahan namin. Nagstart talaga sa recruitment,” said head coach Dante Alinsunurin, who took over the coaching reins from Oliver Almadro.
“Pinaghandaan namin to. Three years talaga to, napasa lang sakin ni coach Oliver,” said Alinsunurin whose Bulldogs dethroned the Far Eastern University Tamaraws after winning the decider in their best of three series in UAAP 75 that ended Saturday.
NU nabbed its first ever UAAP men’s volleyball title in four sets, 26-24, 25-22, 23-25, 25-19, at the Arena in San Juan.
Bulldog Peter Torres put a period to the championship series by converting on a powerful, match-clinching attack — a fitting finish to a performance worthy of the finals MVP award.
“Wala akong masabi kay Peter. Deserving talaga syang manalo ng award, sya ang bumubuhay lagi samin sa loob ng court,” said Alinsunurin.
The high-leaping Torres dished out 15 points (13 on hits), while Jan Berlin Paglinawan paced NU in points with 16.
The recruitment started with Torres, who was even a basketball varsity player at first before shifting to volleyball in Leyte National Highschool in Tacloban.
After NU came back from eight points down in the first set, Alinsunurin said he was confident his boys could pull through.
NU took a 24-18 lead on four straight errors by FEU in the fourth set, and it only needed Torrres’ kill to finish off the match and bag the championship.