Young Bulldogs take on seasoned Falcons in UAAP opener
Mark Escarlote on Feb 02, 2016 06:27 PM
Veteran setter and team captain Vince Mangulabnan leads the charge of the young National University Bulldogs against an intact Adamson University side.
National University’s new pack of Bulldogs will get their 78th UAAP men’s volleyball tournament initiation on Wednesday.
Parading eight new faces, the Bulldogs collide with a solid and seasoned roster of Adamson University Falcons in the 8:00 a.m. curtain-raiser at the Philsports Arena in Pasig City.
The winner of the match will join early leaders defending champion Ateneo de Manila and Far Eastern University.
NU lost the bulk of its arsenal with the departure of its main scorers Peter Torres, Berlin Paglinawan, Rueben Inaudito, libero Mark Dizon, Edwin Tolentino, Fauzi Ismail and Josephenry Tipay.
Veteran setter and team captain Vince Mangulabnan despite having a young crew is optimistic about their chances of taking the crown back to Sampaloc after yielding it to Ateneo in last year’s championship series.
“Wala kaming ace spiker, wala kaming ace hitter pero lahat ‘yan malalakas maglaro. Siyempre mga bata kaya ine-expect naman na aggressive ang mga 'yan. Wala silang aabangan na ace player dahil lahat ‘yan gagana,” he said.
Other holdovers for the Dante Alinsunurin-mentored squad are Bryan Bagunas, Ruben Baysac, Kim Dayandante, Kim Malabunga and Francis Saura.
However, NU is facing the very confident Falcons.
Adamson hopes to ride on their high morale after defeating the Bulldogs in five sets to capture the Intercollegiate crown.
“Mataas ang morale namin laban sa kanila kasi natalo na rin namin sila sa Intercollegiate,” said King Falcon Michael Sudaria.
Season 77 Best Receiver and Digger Rence Melgar is back for Adamson together with hitters Sudaria, Dave Pletado and John Philip Yude.
Only three new Falcons are set to spread their wings, making Adamson one of the most experienced team in the field.
An advantage coach Domingo Custodio wants his team to capitalize in.
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