MANILA – Reigning Most Valuable Player Cherry Ann Rondina made sure the UAAP women’s beach volleyball crown stayed in España, as she carried anew University of Santo Tomas to its second straight title, third in the last four years.
Rondina and Caitlin Viray outmuscled the tandem of Bernadette Pons and Kyla Atienza of Far Eastern University, 21-15, 21-19, in Game 2 to sweep the championship series at Sands at SM by the Bay in Pasay City Saturday.
The UST duo also finished UAAP Season 80 undefeated, after previously sweeping the elimination round en route to an automatic finals berth.
Viray tallied 17 points, while Rondina added 11, as the duo played through wet weather.
UST took Game 1 21-16, 22-20.
Down by six in the second set, UST dropped an 8-0 bomb, sparked by a well-placed push by Rondina, to close the series and the season, 21-19.
FEU pulled away early in the second frame with Pons and Atienza finding openings in UST's side, including a fast return from the latter that hit the baseline to make it 16-10.
"Sinabi ko talaga na hindi kami mag-game 3. Always kong pinagkatiwalaan si Cait (Viray)," said Rondina. "Alam ko sa sarili ko na kaya namin basta control-in lang namin."
UST had a commanding lead in the first set, creating an 18-13 advantage after Rondina's attack and Viray's off-speed hit.
Viray denied FEU any hopes of a comeback, closing the set with an ace.
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