Lady Bulldogs clinch first semis seat in thriller
Mark Escarlote on Aug 24, 2016 09:12 PM
National University marched into the semifinals after a five-set win over Far Eastern University.
National University clinched the first semifinals seat by outlasting the erstwhile unbeaten Far Eastern University, 25-17, 24-26, 14-25, 25-18, 15-11, Wednesday night for its second win in the 13th V-League Collegiate Conference quarterfinals at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig City.
The Lady Bulldogs recovered from a 1-2 match deficit to improve its carryover record to 3-1 while snapping the Lady Tamaraws’ four-game winning streak.
Jaja Santiago smashed 15 attacks including the match-clinching kill, in her total of 19 points while Aiko Urdas and Jorelle Singh scored 15 and 12 markers, respectively, for NU. Jasmine Nabor dished out 64 excellent sets.
After extending the match with strong fourth set showing, the Lady Bulldogs raced to 10-4 lead in the decider. FEU fought back to close in within two points twice with the last being at 12-10 on a kill by Heather Guino-o.
Santiago answered with a kill of her own followed by a miscue of Lady Tams setter Angelica Cayuna on Remy Palma as FEU gets into matchpoint, 14-10. Toni Rose Basas saved a matchpoint for the Lady Tams before the 6-foot-5 Santiago sealed the two-hour, two-minute match.
“Masaya naman ako sa ginalaw ng mga bata pero I’m not satisfied,” said NU coach Edjet Mabbayad. “Marami pa ring lapses talaga kanina. Kita naman e kaya nag-five sets. Nandoon pa rin ang attitude ng mga bata na kapag nahahabol nara-rattle. Yun pa rin ang dapat baguhin.”
“Pero overall masaya naman kasi nanalo eh,” added Mabbayad, whose squad will end the quarters onm Monday against University of the Philippines.
Basas ended up with 21 points anchored on 17 attacks and a four aces while Palma had 14 markers for the Lady Tams, who slid to 2-1 record tied with San Sebastian College. Bernadeth Pons finished with 12.
Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles