Fate is against University of the Philippines.
Lady Maroons head coach Godfrey Okumu felt that his wards did their best to win but it seemed that Lady Luck looked the other way.
UP came into the UAAP Season 81 women’s volleyball tournament as one of the top contenders after ruling two pre-season competitions and a training camp in Thailand.
Unfortunately, their preparations didn’t translate on the big stage as the Lady Maroons bowed out of the Final Four race with a stinging loss to also-ran National University, 21-25, 24-26, 25-17, 25-23, 15-17, Sunday at the MOA Arena.
“It’s kind of unreal when you win two championships and you don’t make it to the Final Four,” a disappointed Okumu said.
The Lady Maroons were swept by the Lady Bulldogs in their elimination round head-to-head and fell to 6-7 win-loss record, good for only a fifth place finish.
UP came into the match with its back against the wall, needing to sweep their last two outings and hope for a tie at 8-6 card to force a playoff for the No. 4 spot in the semis.
NU spoiled all that.
“Like today’s game we left it to chance but we had chances to win many games before this one. I’ll just put it in one word, maybe it’s just luck is not on our fight,” said Okumu.
The Lady Maroons, actually, had a chance to steal the win after saving a match point in the extended fifth set and even getting a 15-14 match point advantage. But Lady Bulldogs rookie Princess Robles tied it at 15 with a down the line hit that almost went out of the backline.
Fate then played a cruel trick on the Lady Maroons when Isa Molde miscalculated her tip attempt on a set that flew too close to the net before Audrey Paran broke their hearts with a finishing kill.
“Sometimes it’s not about the skills, because skills wise we are good,” Okumu said. “It’s only luck and patience bring a lot of difference in a team.”
UP can still end its season on a high note on April 27 against Adamson.
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