UAAP: Eya Laure, UST scrape past UP to end eliminations
MANILA, Philippines-University of Santo Tomas got dragged to the limit by University of the Philippines before grinding it out, 25-21, 25-20, 22-25, 19-25, 15-6, with practically nothing bigger than just school pride on the line on Sunday at the conclusion of the UAAP Season 85 women’s volleyball elimination phase.
Eya Laure was the chief executioner in the final set, rattling off UST’s last five points as the Tigresses went through the motions of settling their No. 4 ranking in the Final Four scheduled to start Wednesday.
They wound up in a tie along with the Adamson Lady Falcons (10-4) after the elimination round, but the Lady Falcons secured the No. 3 spot after claiming a higher ranking by beating the Far Eastern University Lady Tamaraws earlier.
“Some of the players stepped up in the absence of those who were not able to play. They embraced their roles and accepted the challenge,” said Laure after pounding the opposition with 28 points built around 26 attacks plus 14 digs and two blocks.
Bernadett Pepito missed the game due to dehydration while Filipino-Italian Milena Alessandrini had to sit out because of a nagging knee injury.
The Tigresses ended up with 29 points in the rankings after the elimination phase behind Adamson’s 32.
They have to defeat the top-seeded La Salle Lady Spikers twice in the semifinals on Wednesday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum to advance to the Finals.
“We will bring the lessons that we learned after this game reached five sets. These things we will treasure going into the Final Four,” said UST coach Kungfu Reyes.
Regina Jurado contributed 15 points to the Tigresses’ cause, Imee Hernandez and Renee Penafiel added 14 and 11 points, Cassie Carballo had 20 excellent sets while Xyza Gula had 22 digs and 11 receptions.
The Lady Maroons fought gallantly in their final game, but closed out their campaign with an 11th consecutive defeat for a 1-13 record.