Inquirer top 7 UAAP 81 women’s volleyball players: Week 6 | Inquirer Sports

Inquirer top 7 UAAP 81 women’s volleyball players: Week 6

By: - Reporter / @BLozadaINQ
/ 10:05 PM March 25, 2019

Every week, INQUIRER Sports will be ranking the seven best performers in the UAAP Season 80 women’s volleyball tournament. The author will base the rankings on the players’ team standings, statistics, and the intangibles that don’t appear on the stat sheets.


MANILA, Philippines—It’s the second round and the UAAP Season 81 women’s volleyball tournament just turned the craziness up a notch.

Ateneo has created distance between itself and the No. 2 teams in the league with its 7-1 record being two games ahead of its nearest competitors.


What made the start of the second round into an absolute mess is that four teams are all tied at No. 2 seed with University of Santo Tomas, De La Salle, University of the Philippines, and Far Eastern University sporting identical 5-3 records.

National University and University of the East are tied at the sixth spot with 2-6 records while Adamson University is at dead last at 1-7.

Now all that is out of the way, here are the players that made the start of the second round a spectacle.

1. Maddie Madayag (Ateneo de Manila University, middle blocker)
Weeks on list: 2
Last week: N/A

Maddie Madayag Ateneo

Maddie Madayag. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/

Maddie Madayag was a defensive fortress for Ateneo when it went the distance against University of Santo Tomas.

The Lady Eagle was an impenetrable wall tallying 11 blocks, the most in the Final Four era, en route to 23 points leading Ateneo to the 19-25, 22-25, 27-25, 25-22, 15-11 win over the Golden Tigresses.

Madayag broke the record previously set by La Salle’s Celine Hernandez a decade ago when she put up nine denials against Adamson University in 2008.


2. Cherry Rondina (University of Santo Tomas, outside spiker)
Weeks on list: 4
Last week: No.2

Cherry Rondina UST

Cherry Rondina. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/

Cherry Rondina has been nothing short of amazing for the Golden Tigresses this week but their loss to the Lady Eagles relegated her to the No. 2 spot instead.

It’s long established that Rondina is one of the most potent offensive players of her generation especially when she bagged the Best Scorer award in Season 80 and she showed her abilities once more in UST’s lone game this week.

Rondina put up 35 points in UST’s five-set loss to Ateneo and her offensive exploits tied Alyssa Valdez’ mark for the most in the UAAP in the Final Four era.

And those 35 points further solidified Rondina’s hold of the top spot in the Best Scorers table when she totaled 157 points six weeks into the tournament.

3. Lycha Ebon (Far Eastern University, opposite hitter)
Weeks on list: 2
Last week: N/A

FEU Tamaraws

Lycha Ebon. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/

An unfortunate injury was the only thing that stopped Lycha Ebon when the Lady Tamaraws faced the Lady Falcons.

Ebon was making her case for the Rookie of the Year plum when she punished Adamson with 19 points but a bad landing forced her to leave the game early after her right knee buckled after she scored her final point.

The Lady Tamaraws then finished the job for Ebon taking the five-set win, 30-32, 25-20, 23-25, 25-20, 15-13.

Here’s to hoping Ebon goes through a quick recovery.

4. Kat Tolentino (Ateneo de Manila University, outside spiker
Weeks on list: 4
Last week: N/A

Kat Tolentino Ateneo

Kat Tolentino. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/

Kat Tolentino was relatively quiet for Ateneo the past week with Ponggay Gaston taking a more prominent role as the Lady Eagle’s outside hitter.

The start of the second round, though, was a different field for Tolentino.

Although she played as a secondary for Madayag, Tolentino still finished with 20 points in their game against the Golden Tigresses and that production pushed her to the third spot of the Best Scorers table with 127 total points.

5. Mary Ann Mendrez (University of the East, outside spiker)
Weeks on list: 1
Last week: N/A

Mean Mendrez UE

Mean Mendrez. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/

UE recorded just its second win in the tournament at the start of the second round and the one most responsible for it all was Mary Ann Mendrez.

The Lady Warriors’ quiet star wasn’t that silent on the stat sheets when she tallied 19 points to lead UE past NU, 25-16, 25-18, 24-26, 25-16.

6. Eya Laure (University of Santo Tomas, outside spiker)
Weeks on list: 4
Last week: No. 4

Eya Laure UST

Eya Laure. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/

Eya Laure may be a second fiddle to Rondina in the UST system but that status doesn’t make her any less of a player.

Laure has consistently delivered for the Golden Tigresses in her hot pursuit of the Rookie of the Year plum and although it came off a loss her 21-point performance against the Lady Eagles was the third-best offensive output this week behind Rondina’s 35 and Madayag’s 23.

And this consistency allowed Laure to hold on to that No. 2 spot in the Best Scorers when she tallied a total of 138 points after Week 6.

7. Jennifer Nierva (National University, libero)
Weeks on list: 2
Last week: No.3

Jennifer Nierva NU

Jennifer Nierva. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/

Jennifer Nierva’s plummet from the third spot to the No. 7 can be mainly attributed to NU’s loss to UE this week.

Although the Lady Bulldogs lost to the Lady Warriors in their lone game this week, Nierva was still a shining star in the middle of that gloomy outcome.

Nierva, already seen as one of the best liberos in the tournament, managed to outplay UE’s Kath Arado in their matchup.

Arado, the reigning Best Receiver and Best Digger, tallied 32 excellent digs and 13 successful receptions but Nierva won that personal matchup with 30 excellent digs and 28 successful receptions.

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TAGS: Ateneo Lady Eagles, Cherry Rondina, Eya Laure, Far Eastern University Lady Tamaraws, Jennifer Nierva, Kat Tolentino, Lycha Ebon, Maddie Madayag, Mary Ann Mendrez, National University Lady Bulldogs, Sports, UAAP Season 81 women’s volleyball tournament, University of Santo Tomas Golden Tigresses, University of the East Lady Warriors
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