GROWING in strength with every game, Ateneo guns for a fourth straight victory when it tackles La Salle-Dasmariñas in the Shakey’s V League Season 10 First Conference at Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan.
The defending champion Lady Eagles are odds-on favorites in the 4 p.m. match against the Lady Patriots, who have an even 1-1 record.
Adamson, with a similar 1-1 slate, also targets a quarterfinal berth against Arellano U in the 2 p.m. first game.
The Lady Falcons, led by Pau Soriano, are hoping to join Arellano and NU in the next phase from Group B.
The Lady Chiefs have been the surprise package of the tournament so far with two victories against a single loss.
Arellano’s solid start has been attributed to the play and leadership of its guest players Nerissa Bautista and Mary Jean Balse.
“They just bring a lot of experience to the team and give the younger players a lot of confidence,” said coach Roberto Javier of Bautista and Balse.
Bautista, who won a Most Valuable Player award while playing for Adamson, will be seeing action against her former team for the first time in the tournament.
But Bautista is just one of the players who could cause problems for the Lady Falcons.
With her experience and her superb attacking play, Balse is expected to be a handful for Adamson, which has a youthful squad.
Bautista and Balse combined for 38 points in Arellano’s 25-18, 25-19, 25-27, 26-24 win over Perpetual Help last Tuesday.
Stopping Alyssa Valdez will be the main concern for the Lady Patriots, who are coming off a 25-17, 25-16, 25-17 triumph over Letran last Tuesday.
But Valdez has been getting plenty of help of late from Rachel Anne Daquis and Fille Cainglet, who had 13 points apiece against the Letran volleybelles.
The Lady Patriots’ hopes will rest on the shoulders of Jennifer Manzano, the wily veteran who topscored with 18 points in the win over Letran last week.