Text and photo by: Denver Del Rosario
MANILA – The University of the Philippines succumbed on Wednesday to Far Eastern University in four sets, 25-19, 15-25, 19-25, 19-25, in the UAAP women’s volleyball tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena.
The Lady Maroons got their groove in the first set but lost steam in the next three as they struggled to find their rhythm in offense.
Skipper Nicole Tiamzon admitted the lack of focus of the team. “Sobrang blank namin kanina. Ang tagal mag-start ng team, parang diesel.”
Angeli Araneta led the Lady Maroons with 14 points, while Marian Buitre and Tiamzon contributed 12 and nine, respectively.
Bernadeth Pons, meanwhile, spearheaded the Lady Tamaraws’ resurgence with 20 points, while Remy Palma and Gen Casugod chipped in 16 and 13 points, respectively.
The Lady Tamaraws took the driver seat in the first technical timeout, 5-8, from barrage of kills by Pons and Casugod.
The Lady Maroons responded back from adversity, stringing five straight points, three of which are opponent errors, to take the lead, 15-11.
A Tiamzon service error tied the game at 17, but consecutive attacks from Buitre, Vina Alinas, and Araneta, snatched four consecutive points to take the lead, 22-18.
A power tip by Araneta set the Diliman-based squad at set point, before an error from the Lady Tamaraws ended the set, 25-19.
The Lady Tamaraws gained early advantage as Buitre and Tiamzon committed attack errors, 2-8, in the second set.
Pons woke up from slumber and scored off-the-block points which gave them the biggest lead of the game, 10-20.
Araneta tried to save the team by scoring through a drop shot, but a service error by Lai handed the set to the Lady Tamaraws, 15-25.
In the third set, the Morayta-based squad charged early as Casugod served an ace to arrive first at the first technical timeout, 5-8.
An attack by Palma and a net violation by Araneta gave the Lady Tamaraws a comfortable lead, 9-16.
Araneta tried a couple of last-minute heroics as she scored an attack, but FEU continued with their effective attacking as an attack by Pons sealed the set for FEU, 19-25.
The Lady Maroons struggled to find their beat as the Lady Tamaraws took control early, 3-9, via two aces from Pons.
UP rallied four straight points, courtesy of Alinas and Lai, to inch closer to FEU, 13-14.
Despite an effort by Buitre to save the Lady Maroons, attacks from Casugod and Palma sealed the game for the Lady Tamaraws, 19-25.