V-League: Faith Nisperos’ 35 points lift Ateneo over Adamson in finals opener
MANILA, Philippines — Faith Nisperos pumped in eight of her 35-point explosion in the decider as Ateneo carved out a 20-25, 25-21, 25-22, 24-26, 18-16 decision over Adamson University to take a step closer in claiming the V-League Women’s Collegiate Challenge on Sunday at Paco Arena.
The 22-year-old Nisperos’ sustained assault put the Lady Eagles at match point at 14-9 but the Lady Falcons fought back behind Trisha Tubu and Rizza Cruz and took the next five points to extend the match before the two teams traded hits for a 16-all count.
AC Miner, however, hammered out a quick kill and Lyann de Guzman came through for Ateneo with an ace to finish off Adamson.
“We’re not thinking about the championship right away, we’re thinking of the process. I know I have a new team, most of them only started now. It’s all about the process,” said Ateneo coach Oliver Almadro, whose wards, however, yielded 40 errors.
Nisperos matched the career-best she made against College of St. Benilde in the 2019 Premier Volleyball League Collegiate Conference battle for third.
The Blue Eagles failed to clinch the game in the fourth set after blowing a 24-22 lead on a Vanie Gandler crosscourt attack as Kate Santiago tallied three straight points for the Lady Falcons before Lorene Toring hit an ace to force the extension.
Gandler also stepped up to fire 20 points on 14 attacks, four aces, and two blocks to go and finished with 11 excellent digs while Miner added 18 points.
Tubu led Adamson with 17 points while Cruz chipped in 16 points, she laced with five blocks.
The Blue Eagles try to wrap it all up on Wednesday at 5 p.m.
“‘That’s what we need to do. Starting well and closing out games. We should play according to the level of the tournament. Adamson is a high-level team so we have to equalize and surpass them,” shared Almadro.
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