‘Huling susuko’: Eya Laure carries UST to the finish line against La Salle

Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 13 2022 05:09 PM

UST captain Eya Laure celebrates with her teammates after a comeback win against the De La Salle Lady Spikers in their UAAP Season 84 first round match. UAAP Media.
UST captain Eya Laure celebrates with her teammates after a comeback win against the De La Salle Lady Spikers in their UAAP Season 84 first round match. UAAP Media.

MANILA, Philippines -- When Eya Laure moved to the frontline in the fifth set of their UAAP Season 84 match against La Salle, there was no question where University of Santo Tomas would go for points.

The third-year spiker took charge in the closing stretch, scoring three consecutive kills to erase a 12-11 deficit into a 14-12 advantage for the Golden Tigresses. She concluded her masterclass by blocking Baby Jyne Soreno to secure the win for UST.

It was a superb performance for the UST captain, who finished with 28 points on 23 kills, three service aces, and two kill blocks. She also had 20 digs and 19 receptions in an all-around showing, while coming up with clutch plays in the end of the match that lasted three hours and two minutes. 

"Kailangan ako 'yung huling nakatayo. Ako dapat 'yung huling susuko," said Laure after the Golden Tigresses seized a 26-24, 22-25, 25-27, 25-23, 15-12 win against the Lady Spikers.

"Kahit suko na lahat kong teammate, kailangan 'di ako susuko," she stressed. "Kailangan makita nila na lumalaban ako, para lumaban din sila. Kumbaga, walang aayaw."

"Walang ayawan -- andito na tayo sa fourth set, fifth set. Ngayon pa tayo aayaw? Tutal, andito na sa harap natin 'yung pinaghirapan natin. So walang ayawan."

Laure had also taken charge in the fourth set, scoring the final four points to send the match to a decider. She went blow-for-blow with La Salle rookie Alleiah Malaluan, who finished with 26 points on 24 kills, 18 digs, and 22 receptions of her own.

While she was undoubtedly the hero of UST's win, Laure gave plenty of credit to her "support system," who came through with some crucial points in the fifth set and kept the Tigresses afloat until she could rotate to the front line.

Notably, Ypril Tapia came off the bench to contribute four points including a crucial off-the-block hit in the fifth set. Ysa Jimenez added 13 points, and Camille Victoria and KC Galdones each had 11 markers. 

It was a redemptive performance for UST's supporting cast, who had faltered in a loss to the University of the Philippines on Tuesday. Laure had 28 points in that match but no other Tigress scored in double-digits, and they lost in four sets.

"Hindi ko kasi talaga kakayanin mag-isa," said Laure. "Grabe 'yung support system ng bawat isa 'pag naglalaro."

"Hindi ko talaga kakayanin mag-isa. Proven naman doon sa last game eh. So maraming-maraming salamat sa teammates ko," she said. "Sana magpatuloy pa 'to. Sabi ko naman sa kanila na nagtitiwala ako, kahit ano mangyari sa kanila."

"Mag-titiwala ako sa kakayahan nila," she stressed.