Lady Spikers face winless Lady Warriors
Mark Escarlote on Feb 26, 2017 09:26 AM
Repeat-seeking De La Salle battles University of the East in its search for a third straight win.
De La Salle University coach Ramil De Jesus is not taking winless University of the East lightly.
The defending champion Lady Spikers march into battle on Sunday with utmost caution against the upset-conscious Lady Warriors as DLSU guns for a third straight victory in the 79th UAAP women’s volleyball tournament at The Arena in San Juan.
“’Yung UE ‘di mo pwedeng biruin eh. So ibang UE na ito, di na gaya ng dati na kahit gamitin mo ang second stringers mo feeling mo mananalo ang team. Eh ngayon ‘di mo pwedeng gawin ‘yun,” said De Jesus.
The duel is at 2:00 p.m. and will air live on ABS-CBN S+A Channel 23, ABS-CBN S+A HD Channel 23 and via livestream.
DLSU is coming off an easy 25-12, 25-16, 25-15 over listless Adamson last Wednesday for a 4-1 win-loss record at second to third tied with archrival Ateneo de Manila behind unbeaten and league-leading University of the Philippines (4-0).
The Taft-based squad will again face a winless team in the Lady Warriors but De Jesus is wary that UE can pull off an upset if they keep their guards down.
The Lady Warriors are down with a five-game losing skid with its last coming at the hands of Ateneo, 14-25, 21-25, 21-25, last Wednesday.
Despite its slump, UE remain a dangerous team as the Lady Warriors trail the Lady Spikers by a hairline in team blocking with an average of 2.59 kill blocks per set compared to DLSU’s 2.69.
With this in mind, De Jesus wants his team to bring their A-game especially that a good win will give them momentum and confidence heading to the much-anticipated Finals rematch against Ateneo next Saturday to close the first round of eliminations.
“Ang UE kailangan mong bigyan ng respeto, seryosohin mo lahat ng kung anong ginagawa mo sa ibang teams dapat gawin mo rin sa UE,” said De Jesus. “Dapat maganda ang resulta para preparation na rin sa game namin ng Ateneo.”
De Jesus will bank on Season 78 Finals Most Valuable Player Kim Dy, Majoy Baron, setter Kim Fajardo, Aduke Ogunsanya, who averaged 11 points in DLSU’s last two games, and Ernestine Tiamzon.
Shaya Adorador, Mary Anne Mendrez, Judith Abil, Seth Rodriguez and 6-foot-3 setter Roselle Baliton must step up their game to snap UE’s skid.
Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles