MANILA -- University of Santo Tomas made short work of skidding University of the East, 25-17, 25-21, 25-23, to end its first round campaign with four straight wins in the UAAP Season 85 men's volleyball tournament, Saturday at the Filoil EcoOil Centre in San Juan.
Josh Ybañez was at the forefront of the Tiger Spikers' attack anew after erupting for a career-best 31 in their win against Ateneo de Manila University last time out, dropping 18 points on six service aces to go with 11 excellent receptions and five digs.
"We're getting there. Yung first round was the mastery period for us, for getting to know one another the setters and the attackers at yung depensa namin tumitinis na ng onti," head coach Odjie Mamon said after UST improved to 6-1 overall in second place.
With UE ahead by two late in the second frame, 19-17, Ybañez took over by scoring four of the next eight points of the Tiger Spikers while also getting help from their foes. The Red Warriors ended the set with back-to-back errors to give UST the set win, 25-21, and a 2-0 lead in the match.
Ybañez's attack from the back row capped the match, denying the Red Warriors' comeback attempt from 24-20 down in the third, 25-23.
Opposite hitter Jay Rack Dela Noche added 10 points for UST while middle blocker Edlyn Colinares chimed in eight points.
Gboy De Vega was targeted by UE's service but did well, tallying 16 excellent receptions along with seven points.
The Red Warriors fell to 2-5 after absorbing their fourth loss in a row.
Kenneth Culabat had nine points for UE while JP Mangahis supplied eight points and 13 excellent receptions but they missed the presence of Lloyd Josafat, who was limited to just five points.