Ateneo out to show what it's made of in UAAP F4 rubber match vs FEU

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Apr 28, 2019 04:29 PM
Ateneo out to show what it's made of in rubber match vs FEU
In the last two years, Ateneo and FEU are tied at 1-1 in the Final Four

There's no doubt about it now, Ateneo de Manila University is the top-seed for the Final Four in the UAAP 81 Women's Volleyball Tournament.

Winners in all but two games in the elimination round, the Lady Eagles are no. 1 and have edged out 10-3 De La Salle University and 10-4 University of Sto. Tomas.

That sets them up for a showdown with 8-5 Far Eastern University and then, they will have a twice-to-beat advantage.

Nonetheless, the league-leaders know are well aware of the tall task ahead of them. "Siyempre, ito na yung simula ng totoong laban. Ang real UAAP, yung playoffs e," head coach Oliver Almadro said in their top-seed-clinching win, Sunday at Filoil Flying V Centre.

He then continued, "Ang importante naman, yung chance e. Now in the Final Four, meron kaming chance for the Finals."

Only, Ateneo's return to the Finals is being blocked by a familiar foe in FEU.

In 2017, the Lady Eagles ousted the Lady Tamaraws in the Final Four. FEU got Ateneo right back the following year.

Now, the two teams meet again for the right to be in the championship round opposite either the Lady Spikers or the Golden Tigresses.

And for Coach O, facing off against FEU for the third year in a row is a golden opportunity for Ateneo to prove itself. As he put it, "It's a test of character for the team. It's time to show our character and we have to work hard and play hard to be back in the Finals."

Whatever happens, the Lady Eagles vow to go all-out against a team that has stood on even ground with them in the last two years. "Alam natin na magaling ang FEU so we have to prepare kung sino man ang nandoon," their mentor said.

He then continued, "Ang sa amin, yung mindset namin is to be back in the Finals."

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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