UAAP Volleyball’s 5 best setters after Round 1
Setters are like the extension of the coaches inside the court. They may just be the most unselfish players in a team because their job is to set up their teammates and make them look good. INQUIRER.net counts down the five best setters in the UAAP after the first round.
#5 Gyzelle Sy (FEU Lady Tamaraws)
One of the comebacking players who have really made a mark this season is setter Gyzelle Sy. After initially deciding to forego her last collegiate playing year to test the scene in the club ranks, Sy returned to FEU’s fold to her and her team’s benefit. Relegated to being a second stringer in the semi-professional leagues, Sy is regaining her confidence as the main playmaker of the Morayta-based squad. She is the tournament’s fifth-best setter with a norm of 5.48 sets per frame.
#4 Fhen Emnas (Adamson Lady Falcons)
Fhen Emnas may not be a superstar setter, but she makes things work. Two things going for her: She has no imposing predecessor to be compared to, and her team’s solid floor defense makes it easier for her to orchestrate the plays for her hitters. She averages 5.78 excellent sets per frame, and it also does not hurt that she is probably the second-most offensive-minded playmaker in the league.
#3 Jewel Lai (UP Lady Maroons)
When you have strong spikers—most of whom are rookies—it’s easy to overlook the setter. But a playmaker as good as Jewel Lai should never be overlooked. The sophomore, who has been playing for UP coach Jerry Yee since high school, is a true silent operator. She is never flashy and instead lets her game do the talking. She is third-best setter in the league with 6.27 excellent sets per period, coming behind just two of the more established players from other teams.
#2 Jia Morado (Ateneo Lady Eagles)
How do you read a player like Jia Morado? She can be silent one time and then flashy the next—but never compromises her efficiency. The third-year player has had an excellent 2015—winning her second UAAP championship and being named as the Philippine national team’s primary setter in both the Under-23 competition and the Southeast Asian Games. After the first round, she had the league’s second-best setting norm of 7.18 plays per frame. Will she have a stellar 2016? She and her fans sure do hope so.
#1 Kim Fajardo (DLSU Lady Spikers)
They may not be the team’s scorers, but setters have their rivalries too. Recent years have pitted the likes of Wendy Ann Semana against Janet Serafica and Rhea Dimaculangan against Jem Ferrer. The past three seasons, however, have seen the rivalry between Julia Morado and Kim Fajardo soar new heights.
While Morado was representing the Philippines in international competitions, Fajardo used off-season tournaments and the UAAP beach volleyball competition to regain her confidence which took a dip after they lost the crown two years ago. The move is obviously paying dividends for Fajardo who averages league-best 8.17 sets per frame.
Who can forget her performance in the Lady Spikers’ drubbing of the Lady Eagles? She topscored in that match, easily cementing her reputation as the tournament’s most offensive-minded playmaker. It never hurt a coach to have a setter of Fajardo’s caliber—efficient and deadly.
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