San Beda makes history, books first Finals appearance
San Beda University punched a Finals ticket for the first time after sweeping University of Perpetual Help.
San Beda University played tough down the stretch, coming back from a three-point deficit in the third set to complete a 25-21, 25-15, 25-23, victory against University of Perpetual Help and advance to its first-ever Finals appearance in the 93rd NCAA women’s volleyball competition at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan.
Nieza Viray, setter Rebecca Cuevas and Season 92 Rookie of the Year Cesca Racraqin delivered the goods to lead the Mendiola-based squad to a best-of-three Finals berth against the winner between repeat-seeking Arellano University and Jose Rizal University, who are playing as of press time.
"Sinabi ko lang sa kanila na tyagain yung game kasi malayo pa eh at saka alam ko ang igagalaw ng players ko sinabi ko sa kanila na, 'Kaya pa nating habulin yan,'" said San Beda head coach Nemesio Gavino on their crucial rally.
"Proud ako sa mga bata kasi yung paghihirap nila, yung struggles na pinagdaanan namin marami rin so proud ako sa kanila," added Gavino, whose squad also swept the Lady Altas in the elimination round.
Viray exploided with 16 points with 13 coming off attacks while Racraquin scored nine markers. Cuevas tallied 44 excellent set with 37 converted by San Beda into kills.
Down 16-19 in the third frame, the Lady Red Spikers rallied to tie the set at 21.
Viray put San Beda up with a through the block kill followed by an error by Perpetual to push the Lady Red Spikers' lead to 23-21. The Lady Altas tied the frame at 23 before Satrianni Espiritu scored on a quick kill to put San Beda at match point.
The Lady Red Spikers claimed the first championship seat when Jowie Albert Versoza sent her attack straight to the net.
Cindy Imbo and Lourdes Clemente had nine points each to pace Perpetual while skipper Bianca Tripoli was limited to only six markers.
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