UAAP: La Salle looks to bounce back against undermanned UST

Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 06 2019 06:57 AM

UAAP: La Salle looks to bounce back against undermanned UST 1
Desiree Cheng and the De La Salle Lady Spikers are seeking a bounce-back win. Arvin Lim, ABS-CBN Sports

MANILA, Philippines – Defending champion De La Salle University looks to pounce on a short-handed University of Santo Tomas (UST) squad on Wednesday, when they return to action in the UAAP Season 81 women's volleyball tournament.

The Lady Spikers are coming off their first loss of the season, having succumbed in five sets to University of the Philippines (UP) last Saturday.

The result dropped La Salle to 3-1, putting them in a triple-tie for first place with UP and Ateneo de Manila University.

"Sabi ko naman sa kanila, kailangan mag-bounce back," La Salle coach Ramil de Jesus said after his team fell to the Lady Maroons, 25-21, 20-25, 21-25, 25-20, 12-15, in a thrilling match.

"Importante lang huwag na tayong magpatalo, kung 'yung goal natin, kung gusto natin ma-reach ang goal natin, so dapat mag-bounce back tayo. 'Yun muna," he added.

La Salle has not lost back-to-back games since the finals of UAAP Season 77.

The defending champions will be up against a hurting UST squad that will play its first game sans Fil-Italian spiker Milena Alessandrini. The reigning Rookie of the Year was diagnosed with a partially torn ACL after a bad fall in the second set of their game against Far Eastern University (FEU), also on Saturday.

"Nakakalungkot lang kasi 'di baleng matalo ka na, huwag ka lang ma-injure-an ng player," said de Jesus of the unfortunate injury to Alessandrini.

"Parehas kaming galing sa talo, kung sino na lang mas gustong manalo sa Wednesday siguro," he added.

The Golden Tigresses carry a 2-2 record to the match.

Game time is at 4 p.m. at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan.

Meanwhile, the FEU Lady Tamaraws (2-2) will look to build on their win over UST when they face off against University of the East (1-3) at 2 p.m.

It took a balanced effort from the Lady Tams to overcome a one-set deficit and take down the Tigresses. Cel Domingo led them with 17 points – including a whopping six blocks.

FEU coach George Pascua said they cannot afford to underestimate the Lady Warriors as they hunt for their first win streak of the season.

"Lahat naman ng team, competitive," he pointed out. "Hindi pwede kahit sino ibasta mo lang iyan."

"Lalaban at lalaban pa rin kami pero ngayon malakas motivation namin. By next game siguro mas iba ‘yung makikita kasi iba ‘yung naglalaro with confidence," he added.

The Lady Warriors are coming off a straight sets loss to the Ateneo Lady Eagles last Sunday.

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