Photo by Luisa Morales
Text by Denver Del Rosario
The University of the Philippines (UP) Fighting Lady Maroons suffered heartbreak today as they crumbled against the Adamson University (AdU) Lady Falcons in three sets, 9-25, 25-27, 20-25, in the UAAP women’s volleyball tournament at the Filoil Flying V Arena.
The Diliman squad underperformed throughout the game, getting overpowered by the Lady Falcons both in scoring and non-scoring departments.
Team captain Diana Carlos finished as the only Lady Maroon scoring double digits with 12 points.
On the other hand, Mylene Paat and Jema Galanza led the Lady Falcons with 15 and 14 points respectively. It was a team effort for Adamson with four players scoring double digits.
Blowout opening set
UP suffered from the get-go as the three-all mark saw a 12-point run from Adamson, including five service aces by Paat to take the dominating lead, 3-15.
The San Marcelino squad proved relentless in their offense against the Lady Maroons, with Galanza and Chiara Permentilla collaborating for the lead, 7-21.
A service ace by Paat closed the set for Adamson, with UP only achieving a single digit score, 9-25.
Tighter second set
The Lady Maroons refused to back down in the second, registering four deadlocks before the first technical timeout, 6-8, in favor of Adamson.
The Lady Falcons tried to pull away midway into the set, 13-18, courtesy of attacks by Galanza and aces by Joy Dacoron.
However, UP staged a comeback as they tied the game at 18, courtesy of errors by the Lady Falcons and aces by substitute setter Rem Cailing.
From that point, both teams saw seven deadlocks as they extended the set, 25-all. However, a drop by Galanza and an attacking error by Isa Molde ended the set, 25-27 to give Adamson a dominating 2-0 lead.
The third set started close, with UP only behind by one point going into the first technical timeout, 7-8.
Heavy serves by the Lady Falcons got them ahead of the Lady Maroons going into the second technical timeout, 14-16.
The Diliman squad eventually lost steam at the end, with the set and the match concluded with an attacking error by Marian Buitre, 20-25.
Defense and confidence woes
The Lady Maroons struggled in their defense throughout the game, only registering 39% in the digging department compared to Adamson’s 51%.
The Diliman team also achieved only 31% in their reception, while the Lady Falcons registered 49%.
Coach Godfrey Okumu attributed the team’s dismal performance to the lack of confidence he observed during the game.
“The players lost confidence in the first set. This type of thing, we cannot train—we train skills,” he said. “We have to play strong and learn to relax, but it seems like it takes time for them to adjust as well.”
Okumu hopes his team learns from the loss to play better in the following games.
“If we can pass well, we’d have good offense,” he said. “I hope with time we become stronger and get better results.”
With the loss, UP loses ground in the team rankings with a 1-2 win-loss card.
The Lady Maroons will try to redeem themselves against the Far Eastern University Lady Tamaraws this Saturday at the Filoil Flying V Arena.