UST star Joshua Ybañez is UAAP men's volleyball rookie MVP | Inquirer Sports

UST star Joshua Ybañez is UAAP men’s volleyball rookie MVP

/ 01:20 PM May 14, 2023

Josh Ybanez UST Golden Spikers UAAP

UST’s Josh Ybanez. UAAP PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines—University of Santo Tomas do-it-all spiker Joshua Ybañez became UAAP men’s volleyball’s second rookie Most Valuable Player after nine years on Sunday at Mall of Asia Arena.

Ybañez capped his sensational freshman year by becoming Season 85 MVP and Rookie of the Year, following the suit of former Ateneo star Marck Espejo, who emerged as the first rookie-MVP in Season 76 last 2014.


The newly-crowned rookie MVP and the Golden Spiker try to force a rubber match and stop the unbeaten National University Bulldogs from sweeping the series and the season in Game 2.


The 20-year-old rookie also raised the 1st Best Outside award after a superb season, emerging as second best scorer with a total of 292 points built on 252 attacks, 20 blocks, and 20 aces behind the season’s top scorer Mark Calado of Far Eastern University, who had 319 points in 14 games but didn’t win an individual award.

The General Santos City native dominated with a whopping 96.00 statistical points (SP), which was 22.863 points higher than the closest competitor, Michaelo Buddin of National University, who had 73.137 SP.

Ybañez, who also displayed consistent floor defense, became UST’s first MVP since Mark Alfafara, who is now part of coach Odjie Mamon’s coaching staff, won the award in Season 75 last 2013. He also emerged as a Tiger to win the top rookie in 15 years since Jayson Ramos in Season 70.

Ybañez played a vital role in bringing back UST to the UAAP men’s Finals for the first time in 11 years after finishing second in the elimination round with a 10-4 record and ousting FEU in the stepladder semifinals.

Nico Almendras of NU actually ranked second in SP with 77.843, but he was disqualified from receiving any individual honors due to a one-set suspension he received during their game against University of the East on March 12. This suspension stemmed from a post-game incident with University of the Philippines on March 8.

Ybañez also secured the 1st Best Outside Spiker recognition by a wide margin, accumulating 371 ranking points (RP). With Almendras’ disqualification, Buddin received the 2nd Best Outside Spiker award.


Buddin ranked fourth in service (0.24 per set), seventh in blocking (0.49 per set), and eighth in spiking (37.76 percent), earning him 260 RP.

Josh Retamar NU Bulldogs UAAP

NU Bulldogs’ Joshua Retamar. UAAP PHOTO

NU had three individual awardees with Joshua Retamar winning his first Best Setter plum, ranking first in setting, seventh in service, 11th in digging, and 14th in blocking, accumulating 242 RP. Congolese freshman Obed Mukaba earned the 1st Best Middle Blocker with an average of almost one rejection per set (0.92) for 204 RP, while fellow rookie Buddin was named the 2nd Best Outside Spiker.

Besides Ybañez, national team member Jay Rack De la Noche brought home the Best Opposite Spiker Award. The rookie ranked third in service and 15th in attacking, earning 177 RP. NU’s Ken Malinis (198 RP) was also disqualified for the same reason as Almendras.

La Salle graduating player BJ Anima ended his collegiate career with the 2nd Best Middle Blocker plum after leading his team to the semifinals, while Ateneo’s Lance De Castro was crowned as the Best Libero with an average of 3.00 per set, and he also placed sixth in reception with an efficiency rate of 49.68 percent, earning 180 RP.

Since UAAP Season 81, the league has been adopting the FIVB-position based awards.

The statistical points are computed by adding all the Rank Points of each player and multiplying the sum by 10. Games won are also included and multiplied by 30. The grand total is then divided by the number of sets played by the player’s team.

Rank Points are determined by the player’s place in each department, with each rank having corresponding Rank Points.

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The cutoff has always been set after the elimination round.

TAGS: UAAP, UAAP Season 85, UST Golden Spikers

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