NCAA Season 94 volleyball: Lady Altas claim last semis spot

Mark Escarlote on Jan 17, 2019 02:08 PM
NCAA Season 94 volleyball: Lady Altas claim last semis spot
University of Perpetual Help marched back into the semifinals to face College of St. Benilde.

University of Perpetual Help bucked a second set collapse and a shaky start in the fourth frame to punch the last NCAA Season 94 women’s volleyball Final Four ticket at the expense of Jose Rizal University, 25-13, 19-25, 25-21, 25-14, Thursday at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan.

Head coach Macky Carino needed to remind his wards about what was at stake in the match to get their minds back in the game after yielding the second frame.

“Sabi ko kapag natalo tanggal, simple lang,” said Carino. “Alam namin kung anong mangyayari sa game today. Kung manalo kami proceed kami (sa Final Four) kapag matalo kami, tanggal. So yun ang sabi ko, it’s a matter of choice kung gusto nyong mag-semis maglaro kayo ng maayos pa.”  

The Lady Altas responded with a better performance in the next two frames to set up a Final Four match against twice-to-beat College of St. Benilde on Tuesday.

Cindy Imbo poured 18 points coming off 14 kills and four aces while putting up 22 digs and nine excellent receptions for an all-around game for the Las Pinas-based squad.

Blanca Tripoli scored 14 points while Jhona Rosal and Shyra Umandal posted 13 markers each for the Lady Altas, who pumped in 49 attack points anchored on Necelle Gual’s 25 excellent sets.

The Lady Altas had a slow start in the fourth set as they allowed the Lady Bombers to tie the frame at 8-8. Perpetual broke the game open with an 11-3 spurt for a 23-13 lead behind the heroics of Tripoli, Imbo and Rosal.

JRU failed to advance in the Final Four after a breakthrough semis stint last year and finished the season with 4-5 slate.

Dolly Versoza got 17 points while Karen Montojo fired 11 markers in a lost cause for the Lady Bombers.   

Meanwhile, men’s division defending champion Perpetual completed a clean sweep of the elimination round with a 25-21, 25-21, 25-13, rout of JRU to advance straight into the best-of-three Finals.

The Altas came out unscathed in nine games for an outright championship seat against the survivor of the knockout stepladder semifinals.

Ronniel Rosales and reigning Most Valuable Player Joebert Almodiel led Perpetual with 14 and 12 points, respectively.

The Heavy Bombers closed their campaign with a 2-7 record.

The first phase of the stepladder semis will begin on Tuesday between Emilio Aguinaldo College and Arellano University. Waiting in the last semis knockout match is College of St. Benilde.

In juniors play, the reigning champion Junior Altas advanced outright into the Finals after defeating the Junior Bombers, 25-13, 25-17, 25-11.

Perpetual swept the nine-game eliminations to secure a spot in the best-of-three championship.

JRU finished the season with a 3-6 record tied with San Sebastian College.

Facing off in the first phase of the stepladder semis are Lyceum of the Philippines University and Emilio Aguinaldo College for the right to take on Letran for the last Finals berth.



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