Three-time defending champion Arellano University assured itself of at least a playoff for a twice-to-beat advantage in the Finals after drubbing Emilio Aguinaldo College, 25-15, 25-14, 25-20, Thursday in the NCAA Season 95 women’s volleyball competition at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan.
Bannering the Lady Chiefs’ seventh win in eight starts were Carla Donato and reigning Most Valuable Player Necole Ebuen with the team’s leading scorer Regine Arocha sitting out the match.
With Arocha riding the bench the whole game to rest, Donato and Ebuen took over the scoring duties with 12 and 11 points, respectively, for Arellano U, which will try to secure the Final Four bonus in a marquee showdown with unbeaten College of St. Benilde (7-0) on Monday.
“Basta kami ang target namin ay everytime na pupunta kami dito kaya ang game sa Monday ay crucial kaya ilalaban namin ng husto 'yun,” said Arellano U coach Obet Javier, who gave Arocha an extra rest after feeling under the weather of late.
“Basta gagawin lang namin best namin. Kung sino man makatapat, ta-try namin makuha 'yung panalo doon,” he added. “Every game lang naman ang gusto namin ay manalo ng manalo.”
Donato hammered 11 attacks and a kill block while Ebuen scored all but one of her points on spikes for Arellano U. Nicole Sasuman and Princess Bello combined for 13 markers for the Lady Chiefs.
The Lady Generals closed their campaign with a 1-8 record – a somewhat better showing compared to their winless outing last year.
Cathrine Almazan posted 14 points for EAC while Dhariane Gallarde finished with six.
Meanwhile, Letran played spoiler to University of Perpetual Help’s chances for a semis bonus after scoring a 25-22, 25-20, 18-25, 16-25, 17-15, win to improve to a 4-4 slate.
The Lady Knights climbed out of a 12-14 hole in the fifth set with three straight points for a 15-14 lead after Perpetual committed a series of errors. Jhona Rosal tied it at 15 but Letran won’t be denied of an upset after Chamberlaine Cunada and Daisy Melendres scored the game’s last two points that locked the Lady Altas at the very dangerous no. 4 seed in the semis.
Cunada had 19 points, Melendres finished with 16 and the duo combined for 30 of Letran’s 61 attack points. Julienne Castro added 12 markers while libero Julia Angeles had 35 digs and 14 excellent receptions.
The Lady Altas finished the elims with a 6-3 mark as they wasted the 22-point effort of Rosal, who also tallied 13 digs and eight receives.
Bianca Tripoli posted 14 points, Charina Scott had 11 while Shyra Umandal had five attacks and five kill blocks for 10 markers for the Las Pinas-based squad.
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