UAAP VOLLEYBALL: UP outlasts feisty UE in five-set thriller
University of the Philippines prevailed over University of the East in five sets.
University of the Philippines outlasted University of the East in five sets, 25-19, 25-13, 21-25, 16-25, 15-8 to give new Kenyan coach Godfrey Okumu a fitting welcome gift in the 80th UAAP women’s volleyball tournament at the MOA Arena on Sunday.
The Lady Maroons regrouped after a third and fourth set collapse to join other opening day winners defending back-to-back champion De La Salle University and National University.
Tots Carlos and Isa Molde waxed-hot in the fifth set, leading UP to an exciting windup.
“First I’d like to say thanks and great job to UE. They played well,” said Okumu. “We put them under pressure in the first two sets and we relaxed.”
Carlos hammered all but two of her 22 points from attacks and Molde filled the stat sheet with 20 points coming off 16 spikes, three aces and a kill block while adding 17 digs for the Lady Maroons, who survived the gruelling match despite giving away 46 points off their errors. Justine Dorog got 11 markers with 18 digs and eight excellent receptions.
UP raced to a 7-3 lead to open the decider but the UE won't just go away as the Lady Warriors breathed down the necks of the Lady Maroons, 8-6, before the Diliman-based squad sparked their finishing 7-2 run.
The Lady Maroons squandered a chance to take the win in straight sets as they allowed the third frame to slip away with the Lady Warriors making a late blitz.
UE erased a 19-21 deficit in the third frame with a closing 6-0 spurt to steal the third set.
The Lady Warriors again pulled the rug from under the Lady Maroons in the fourth frame when UE shocked UP with a scorching scoring barrage, including nine straight points midway in the set to turn a 12-13 deficit to a 21-13 lead.
UP stopped the bleeding with an attack by Molde before UE forced the deciding frame with a closing 4-2 run.
Judith Abil finished with a career-high 12 points, Me-Ann Mendrez had 10 while Seth Rodriguez and Shaya Adorador combined for 15 for the Lady Warriors.
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