UAAP VOLLEYBALL: UST outlasts Adamson, sets semis showdown against NU
Mark Escarlote on Apr 18, 2018 05:10 PM
Joshua Umandal scored 21 points to power University of Sto. Tomas to a Final Four berth.
Veteran Arnold Bautista took charge in the closing stretch of the fifth set to tow University of Sto. Tomas into the last Final Four berth as the Tigers outlasted Adamson University, 25-20, 25-23, 19-25, 23-25, 15-11, Wednesday in the playoff of the 80th UAAP men’s volleyball tournament at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan.
The Espana-based squad booked the last semis ticket for the right to face twice-to-beat National University on Sunday.
Bautista, who is on his last playing year, scored three of the Tigers’ last four points in the deciding frame including the Final Four berth-clinching kill off a combination play to seal the two-hour, 12-minute duel.
UST head coach Odjie Mamon praised the heroics of Bautista, one of the three seniors on their swan song which include Jayvee Sumagaysay and Ty Carodan
“Nag-take charge 'yung senior, si Bautista,” said Mamon.
“Kaya ano eh, confident pa rin ako noong fifth set, andoon 'yung Bautista sa loob. Kasi nawawala 'yung setter. Pag nawala 'yung setter, definitely wala na 'yung dalawang middle,” he added. “Hindi ko mapagalitan yung (Joshua) Umandal kasi… so take charge na lang, kailangan mag-take charge. Nag-take charge naman siya.”
Umandal led the Tigers with 21 points with all but one coming off kills while Bautista had 17 markers and 13 digs. Carodan and Manuel Medina scored 13 and 10, respectively.
UST’s intensity dropped in the third and fourth sets, allowing the Falcons, which beat Tigers last Saturday to force a playoff following a two-way tie at 6-8 after the elims, to put the game into a decider.
The two teams went neck and neck in the early part of the fifth frame before skipper Timothy James Tajanlangit sparked a 5-0 blitz capped by his back-to-back service aces to break a 6-6 deadlock.
Adamson mounted a fightback behind graduating player JP Yude as the Falcons breathed down the necks of the Tigers, 11-10.
Carodan quelled the run by winning a joust before Bautista followed it up with back-to-back hits to put UST at match point, 14-10. Medina committed a service error before Bautista’s finishing blow.
Yude finished his collegiate career with 20 points, George Labang had 18 while Paolo Pablico got 16 for Adamson. Graduating libero Rence Melgar had 18 excellent receptions and 21 digs for the Falcons.
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