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PVL: Tigresses gun for first semis spot

Unblemished University of Sto. Tomas zeroes in on the first semifinals berth when the Tigresses face College of St. Benilde in the Premier Volleyball League Season 2 Collegiate Conference at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan Saturday. Game time is at 4:00 p.m. and will air via livestream. UST went off to a hot start, steamrolling past their first three assignments – all NCAA teams - in dominating fashion before crushing UAAP rivals University of the Philippines in four sets. Rookie Eya Laura and Fil-Italian sophomore Milena Alessandrini are playing consistently this conference, leading the Espana-based squad’s offense. But the Tigresses will go up against a resurging team, which is coming off a four-set win over San Beda University last week to enter the win column after starting its campaign with back-to-back losses. The Lady Blazers are currently at fifth spot.     ---   Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource: abscbn abscbnAug 10th, 2018

UAAP Season 81 beach volleyball: Tigresses halt Lady Bulldogs to near sweep

Defending champion University of Santo Tomas moved on the cusp of completing a seven-match sweep Tuesday in the UAAP Season 81 beach volleyball tournament at Sands SM By The Bay. Sisi Rondina and Babylove Barbon made quick work of National University's Klymince Orillaneda and Antonette Landicho, 21-12, 21-7, before returning in the afternoon with a swift 21-7, 21-11 conquest of Adamson University's Hannah Nicole Infante and Gracelchen Ave. Aside from holding a perfect 6-0 card, the Tigresses have yet to drop a set this season. UST shoots for an outright passage in the best-of-three championship series with a victory over Far Eastern University at 10:40 a.m. on Friday. De La Salle University's Tin Tiamzon and Michelle Morente, meanwhile, overpowered University of the East's Lyen Shan Ritual and Donna Nebrea, 21-4, 21-5.   The Lady Spikers tied the Lady Bulldogs at 4-1, as the two teams were battling for the second Final Four spot as of presstime. In the men's division, FEU's Jude Garcia and Kevin Hadlocon humbled De La Salle's Geraint Bacon and Paul Serrano, 21-11, 21-10, to moved within a win of securing an outright Finals berth. Reigning champions Bryan Bagunas and James Natividad of NU swept Clifford Inoferio and Alven Aljas of UE, 21-16, 21-15, while Krung Arbasto and Jaron Requinton of UST downed Pao Pablico and Jesus Valdez of Adamson University, 23-21, 21-15, to chalk up their fifth wins in six games.   The Bulldogs and the Growling Tigers clash for the twice-to-beat Final Four bonus on Friday. Ateneo's Kurt Aguilar and Abai Llenos toppled  UP's Nico Consuelo and Mac Millete, 21-16, 21-15, to keep its slim semis hopes alive at 2-4.  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 2nd, 2018

UST books ticket to semis

As rolls of thunder resonated inside the Filoil Flying V Arena, the University of Santo Tomas assured their spot in the semi-finals of the PVL Collegiate COnference after sweeping the College of Saint Benilde, 26-24, 29-27, 25-17, Saturday afternoon. Pressing on to retain the lead all game long, the Golden Tigresses anchored their offense on rookie Ysabel Jimenez and sophomore Milena Alessandrini with 13 points each. "Yung sinasabi ko sa team is para kaming panahon ngayon. Gloomy, umuulan, malamig, pilit binubuhay. Yung aura sa loob, nararamdaman namin sa labas," said assistant coach Ian Fernandez. Fernandez called the shots in lieu of head coach Kungfu Reyes who is in Japan now for the National Team training. In the first set, UST started hot with a commanding 7-0 lead but eventually let the Lady Blazers catch up in the end game. Still, UST had more power in the close out. The same tempo continued until the second set but come the third set, the Golden Tigresses' momentum was unstoppable. Alessandrini finished the match with a solid crosscourt attack, 25-17. "Mahirap players mo kapag ayaw gumalaw, nangangapa. Di namin alam exact term dun sa aura nila nung first and second set. At least na overcome namin first two sets na sabi ko sa kanila enjoy sila celebrate every point, mga kasama i-cheer kahit anong klaseng puntos." The Golden Tigresses now sport a perfect 5-0 slate and will face Adamson next on August 18. The Lady Blazers will seek for their second win on August 15 against UP to imporve their 1-3 record......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 11th, 2018

PVL: UST earns semis spot with fifth straight win

University of Santo Tomas booked its ticket to the semifinals after its a sweep of College of St. Benilde, 26-24, 29-27, 25-17, in the Premier Volleyball League Collegiate Conference Saturday at Filoil Flying V Centre. The Golden Tigresses topped the standings with a 5-0 record, despite having star Eya Laure play limited minutes, while the Lady Blazers are in fifth with a 1-3 card. Laure, who's nursing a sore right shoulder, still finished with 11 points after sitting out most of the third quarter with Milena Alessandrini and rookie Ysabel Jimenez carrying the scoring load with 13 points apiece. UST assistant coach Ian Fernandez, however, warned his team to never be complace...Keep on reading: PVL: UST earns semis spot with fifth straight win.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsAug 11th, 2018

Eya Laure fights through shoulder injury to carry Tigresses to 5-0

Eya Laure has been nothing short of remarkable for University of Santo Tomas in the Premier Volleyball League Collegiate Conference with the rookie putting up big numbers despite a lingering right shoulder injury. The 18-year-old open spiker has averaged 16 points a game for the Golden Tigresses despite dealing with a right shoulder that had been dislocated twice in the past few days, Managing to fight through the pain, Laure helpedUST blank College of St. Benilde, 26-24, 29-27, 25-17, to stay perfect with a 5-0 card in the tournament. READ:PVL: UST earns semis spot with fifth straight win "I just fought the pain and I tried to play in the third set but it was best to res...Keep on reading: Eya Laure fights through shoulder injury to carry Tigresses to 5-0.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsAug 11th, 2018

PVL: Tigresses gun for first semis spot

Unblemished University of Sto. Tomas zeroes in on the first semifinals berth when the Tigresses face College of St. Benilde in the Premier Volleyball League Season 2 Collegiate Conference at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan Saturday. Game time is at 4:00 p.m. and will air via livestream. UST went off to a hot start, steamrolling past their first three assignments – all NCAA teams - in dominating fashion before crushing UAAP rivals University of the Philippines in four sets. Rookie Eya Laura and Fil-Italian sophomore Milena Alessandrini are playing consistently this conference, leading the Espana-based squad’s offense. But the Tigresses will go up against a resurging team, which is coming off a four-set win over San Beda University last week to enter the win column after starting its campaign with back-to-back losses. The Lady Blazers are currently at fifth spot.     ---   Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 10th, 2018

Unbeaten Tigresses seek semis vs Blazers

Streaking University of Santo Tomas seeks to fortify its hold of the top spot as it clashes with College of Saint Benilde while slumping teams San Beda and San Sebastian aim to finally break into the win column in the Premier Volleyball League Collegiate Conference at the Filoil Flying V Center in San Juan today......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsAug 10th, 2018

Ateneo s Fab 5: The Fearless Underdogs of UAAP Volleyball

Newly-appointed head coach Roger Gorayeb looked at his line-up heading into UAAP Season 71. A champion mentor of NCAA powerhouse San Sebastian College - Recoletos, Gorayeb had in his hands a gargantuan task of rebuilding Ateneo de Manila University women’s volleyball program. Just a few months before, Ronald Dulay, the mentor before him landed a trio of blue chip recruits who were fresh from a successful stint in the Palarong Pambansa. Angeline "Dzi" Gervacio, Fille Saint Cainglet and Jamenea "Jem" Ferrer just joined the Katipunan-based squad. Gervacio and Cainglet were products of St. Scholastica's College in Manila while Ferrer was a gem from Hope Christian School under girl’s volleyball guru Jerry Yee. Looking at his 15-woman line-up with the season just a few months ahead, Gorayeb knew he needed to do something drastic. The roster just won’t do. Talking to then athletic director Ricky Palou and team manager Tony Boy Liao, the mentor told the team officials that he intended to cut five players from the list. One could just imagine the shock in their faces. “Nakita ko may line-up pero player-playeran lang yung ganoon bang tipo, 15 ata yun. Sabi ko ‘Magtatanggal ako ng lima then magre-recruit ako,’” he said. The three rookies were in. Middle Bea Pascual, Kara Acevedo and libero Steph Gabriel retained their spots. He needed more. “Sa mga tinira kong players, si Kara Acevedo sabi niya, ‘Coach mayroong player ang ICA (Immaculate Conception Academy) na gumraduate naka-exam na rito pasado.’ Sabi ko, ‘Sige papuntahin mo,’” said Gorayeb. It was Gretchen Ho. “Sa akin kasi ang talagang nagyaya sa akin si coach Ron Dulay. Si Kara Acevedo teammate ko and she’s been recruited by Ateneo. So one summer wala akong magawa naki-train lang ako noon tapos nagustuhan nila ang laro ko and then fourth year noong graduate na ako I passed the ACET then niyayaya na nila ako,” she said. “Then nagbago ng coach na si Coach Roger and dun niya ako nakita.”   “Pagdating ko ng March (sa Ateneo) wala na akong way para maka-recruit pa. Ang nangyari yung tatlo accepted na kaagad. Si Gretchen tinanong ko sabi ko, ‘ano ba ang laro mo?’ Sabi niya the usual panggitna, tres,” Gorayeb recalled. “So sinubukan ko pero ang laro niya tres hindi quick. Siya panggitna pero hindi quicker na gusto ko saka yung height niya (maliit). Kaya lang si Gretchen takbo ng takbo, mahilig magtatakbo so sabi ko sige pwede na yan. Wala namang player na during that time. So kinuha ko si Gretchen.” Gorayeb just needed just one more. “Ngayon nagkaroon ng STCAA (Southern Tagalog Calabarzon athletic association) eh kulang pa ako ng isa, wala akong panggitna. Ang gitna ko during that time si Bea lang tapos si Gretchen so wala akong pamalit. So naisipan ko may nakita ako sa STCAA,” he said. He spotted a lanky player from Canossa Academy-Lipa, Aillysse Nacachi. “Sabi ko kay Sir Tony pagtyagaan ko na lang ito kahit hindi naman kalakasan at wala naman na rin akong choice na makapili kasi rush ang pagdating ko dyan. Nakiusap lang sila sa akin na magbuo ako ng team kasi si Ronald nag-resign,” said Gorayeb. Another freshman could’ve had ended up with Ateneo, Hope’s libero Melissa Gohing. But a few obstacles prevented her from fulfilling her promise to join Ferrer in Ateneo. She instead chose to join the ladies in green and white in Taft.    SOMETHING PROMISING December 7, 2008. Far Eastern University Gym. Excitement filled the air. Fans, mostly volleyball purists and some who just came to support their classmates or were just curious to see a new spectacle after the basketball season ended, slowly settled in their seats for the women’s division’s second game. It was Adamson University, the previous year’s runner-up, which just visited the turf of their arch nemesis and defending champion FEU, which was led by that era’s finest and most popular volleybelle Rachel Anne Daquis. Fans wanted to see if the Lady Falcons still had the same firepower they had the previous season with the loss of top setter Janet Serafica and power hitter Sang Laguilles. A rookie-laden Ateneo squad should be easy pickings with Angela Benting, rookie Pau Soriano and libero Lizlee Anne Gata in the roster. Besides the Lady Falcons got the Lady Eagles’ number. Or so they thought. “Naalala ko nu’ng time namin sinasabi sa amin ng seniors namin na, ‘Hay naku ang lakas ng Adamson, never kami nanalo dyan,’” Cainglet, now happily married to film director Lino Cayetano and with three beautiful children, recalled.  But the Lady Eagles stunned Adamson in the opening set. The Lady Falcons took the next two frames. Ateneo stole the fourth.  “Ako naalala ko ano eh, parang alam namin na lahat kasi kami palaban. Nasa amin yun. Tapos binigyan kaming lahat ng chance to be in the first six so parang dream come true,” said Ho, now an ABS-CBN host. “Naalala ko rin na palaban kaming lahat kumbaga nothing to lose eh so ang ano namin, sumasabay kami sa laro and nu’ng nakita na namin na ‘Ay kaya pala natin ‘to guys. Kaya pala naming lumaban.’” Still, Adamson had the upper hand in experience. The Lady Falcons, used to pressure and were steady at crunch time, outlasted Ateneo.           The young Katipunan-based squad fell short, 25-22, 22-25, 15-25, 25-15, 8-15. But for the Fab 5, it was a loss that felt like a resounding victory. “Parang sobrang natutuwa kami and everybody in the crowd, kaya siguro kami natawag na Fab 5 kasi rookies kami pero kahit ganoon palaban kami,” said Ho. “Saka close game. Five sets yun.” However, it was the first of five five-set matches that Ateneo will drop that season including one in the second round against the Manilla Santos-bannered De La Salle University. “Pero ang problema di kami nananalo ng five sets. Parang ilan lang ang naipanalo namin na ganoon. Feeling ko na-overwhelm kami na ‘Uy nananalo tayo.’ May ganoong disbelief ng konti pero alam namin na may ibubuga kami,” said Ho. “Definitely, our rookie season was full of five-set matches. It was tough, we felt like we were so close, but still so far away. At some point, it gave us frustration also. We just couldn't figure out that time what is it that's still lacking because we couldn't win the five-set matches,” according to Nacachi. “People said, it was because the team was still so inexperienced. We still didn't have the tenacity unlike of those more matured teams. But we didn't take it as bad, it was a learning experience for us all at the end. We had to learn how to develop that finishing will to be able to win games like that in the future.” The Fab 5 finished their rookie season with a 6-8 slate at fifth spot.   ‘MAY MEDAL NA TAYO’ Gorayeb remembered on their second year the look on Pascual’s face in their last elimination game match against Adamson. Already wrapping up their first win over the Lady Falcons, Pascual was giddy. “Natatawa nga ako dyan kay Bea kasi papanalo na kami nu’n tapos sumesenyas na siya ng tres. Sabi ko, ‘Hoy anong ginagawa mo?’ Yun pala sobrang saya na niya kasi for the first time in 30 years magkaka-medal na sila,” he said. It was the most important match of the season for the Lady Eagles. With the Fab 5 already in their sophomore year, Ateneo was already making great strides. The Lady Eagles closed that season’s elims with five straight wins capped with a victory over Adamson. Ateneo posted a 10-4 win-loss mark to enter the Final Four legitimately. “Ang nangyari kasi nu’ng time nila Charo (Soriano) kaya sila nakapasok sa semis kasi may nag-squeal na si (Jacq) Alarca di pala naka-enroll nu’n kaya na-forfeit mga laro ng La Salle,” said Gorayeb. The Fab 5 proved that they were not just a bunch of much-hyped up pretty faces. They backed it up with their skills on court. It didn’t matter that Ateneo were swept by eventual champion University of Sto. Tomas in the Final Four.      But the podium finish of Season 72 was short-lived. Adamson got its revenge in the last game of Season 73 elims, bumping off the Lady Eagles in the podium finish. The loss put Ateneo in a collision course with the twice-to-beat DLSU, who could’ve completed an elims sweep if not only for a forfeited match against University of the East after UAAP found out that Carmela Garbin and Clarisse Yeung participated in a ‘ligang labas’ while the season was onoing, in the Final Four. Ateneo gave the Lady Spikers a scare before succumbing in another heartbreaking five-set match. The Lady Eagles finished fourth but that lone semis game gave Ateneo and its maturing Fab 5 enough experience to dream for something big – A ticket into the Finals.      ‘HINOG NA KAYO’ The first three years saw the gradual improvement for Ateneo. But Season 74 proved to be the turning point for the Fab 5. A fresh new recruit from University of Sto. Tomas high school, who just completed a year of residency, came into picture and with the Fab 5 armed with years of experience, the Lady Eagles’ fate will forever be changed. Alyssa Valdez, a highly recruited open spiker just like Gervacio, Cainglet-Cayetano and Ferrer years back, gave renewed excitement for the Ateneo faithful. “Alyssa's joining with Ateneo was a great turning point for us. We needed as much support we can get, and Alyssa's entrance to the team was a great boost to the team's morale,” said Nacachi. “The girl is a powerhouse and we felt like with her presence, the team finally became solid.” “We were able to play around with the positions and the rotations, since we had different versatile open players who can also greatly play other roles,” she added. “We were also able to formulate a lot of plays and attacks because Alyssa can generally do all kinds; open, running, quick, name it all. She gave the team the power and the versatility that we previously lacked from the past seasons.” Social media was just gaining traction then but the Lady Eagles were already on the radar of volleyball purists through online forums. For the first time, Ateneo was considered a legitimate contender.   The Fab 5 proved it by winning 11 games in the elimination round, losing only to UST once and dropping two against the Lady Spikers. Valdez’s arrival gave Ferrer an even broader option on offense. It eased the scoring load off the shoulders of Cainglet and Gervacio, who was then moved to an opposite position. “I guess sakto lang din yung dating niya because by that time Kara Acevedo graduated so someone had to fill in her spot so coach Roger decided for me to move to utility or opposite,” said Gervacio. “And then sakto Alyssa naman could fill in the spot na other open spiker.” “So timing din na we had all the pieces put together at the right time,” she added. With a good performance in the elims despite missing a legit middle in Bea Pascual and the entry of Aerieal Patnongon barred by academic problems, Ateneo finished second and for the first-time was armed with a twice-to-beat advantage in the stepladder semifinals. The Lady Eagles faced an experienced Tigresses side in the last stepladder semis stage. UST just came from a hard-fought four-set do-or-die match against FEU and were banking on their four-set win over Ateneo in the second round to force another sudden death. Ateneo’s date with destiny was sealed with a four-set win over the Tigresses, who then bid goodbye to Maika Ortiz and Judy Anne Caballejo. “Pinu-push na rin kami ni Coach Roger noon eh, ‘Hinog na kayo ngayon. Kasi dalawang taon na lang, kailangan makapasok na kayo sa Finals,’” said Ho. “Somehow senior na rin kami,” added Cainglet.  “Season 74 was really the target season for us to be in the finals and target even to win the championship,” according to Nacachi. “During this time, we were already thinking we could not afford to not go in the finals.” “So it was with our mindset and our level of commitment that we were able to finally reach our goal of reaching the finals,” she added. “We had enough experience that time already, and it was really time for us to show the level of game maturity the team had obtained from the past seasons.” But then they had to face an unbeaten team. Unscathed in 14 games, De La Salle University was poised to complete a perfect season. The Lady Eagles spoiled it. Ferrer outplayed DLSU setter Mika Esperanza, 57-42, in excellent sets as Ateneo handed the Lady Spikers its first loss after 25 straight victories in a come-from-behind 23-25, 28-26, 25-23, 25-17, Finals opener win. Witnessed by 3,002 spectators inside the then The Arena in San Juan, all of the Fab 5 produced points. Cainglet had 19 behind Valdez’s 24, Gervacio scored 12, Ho had 10, Nacachi finished with five while Ferrer had one. Gorayeb made a big gambit and it worked. “Dahil sa wala kong panggitna, yung laro namin ng La Salle, ginawa kong quicker si Alyssa. Kasi si Alyssa nakakapalo. Nagulat si Ramil (de Jesus) dun.” It was a big win. A huge upset. Unfortunately, Ateneo needed to win two more.  DLSU held a thrice-to-beat advantage.   THAT SWAG After Ateneo made a miracle in Game One, fans began to feel a new rivalry born. The attendance spiked. From just 3,000 spectators, the gate attendance more than doubled its size. The interest was there. Fans of traditional powers began to notice the Lady Eagles as a rising team. For the first time, a squad with no previous championship experience except for a title during the Marcos era in a different collegiate league, made a giant jolt. Everybody wanted to see what these girls would do next.    The Lady Eagles, still high on adrenaline after their Game 1 upset, took the opening set in Game 2. But just like in their opener, a well-experienced DLSU squad adjusted to take the next three frames to move a step closer to a repeat crown. With then Rookie of the Year Ara Galang, Season Most Valuable Player Aby Marano, an intimidating Michele Gumabao and a very efficient Finals MVP Cha Cruz teaming up for the kill, the Lady Spikers ripped Ateneo apart in Game 3 in straight sets, 25-16, 25-22, 25-13. “Sabi nga ni Dzi na nadyan na lahat eh. So I guess noong Season 74 nandoon na pero may kulang pa rin,” said Ho. “I guess we we’re able to make it to the Finals pero wala pa kaming championship experience.” Ferrer agreed. "Siguro ang kulang yung championship experience kasi nasa La Salle na ‘yun eh. Ilang years na silang nagpa-finals, nag-champion and for Ateneo doon pa lang namin sinimulan," said the three-time Best Setter. Lacking championship experience is one thing, but Ateneo during that time wasn’t ready for DLSU’s most feared weapon: the Lady Spikers’ swag.  “They have that swag,” said Gervacio. “Everyone knows about it naman. It’s really coach Ramil’s style talaga kasi as I remember when we were first year, four out of six of the players inside the court were rookies and even if we go against the powerhouses UST, FEU, Adamson, hindi sila yung nakikita nyo na kapag championship na rivalry, na swag, angas, stare down. Pero La Salle talaga kahit sino ang kalaban nila they’ll bring that attitude inside the court.” That Finals series cemented a new rivalry that will become one of the most celebrated in the sport. “I think it also helped that Ateneo-La Salle basketball didn’t face also,” said Gervacio. “Siyempre nandoon ang hunger for the rivalry eh and timely din na its been Ateneo-La Salle na rin sa volleyball.”   CLOSING A CHAPTER The Fab 5 were now in their fifth and last year. They wanted to leave a winning legacy. The pieces were already there. Gorayeb had at his disposal five seniors, a rising star in Valdez, a sophomore middle in Amy Ahomiro, a versatile Ella De Jesus, a steady libero in Denden Lazaro and a new kind of weapon – a massive crowd that can turn any venue into a sea of blue.              As expected, the second installment of the Ateneo-DLSU rivalry was set into place. Both sweeping their semis opponents. The Lady Spikers crushed National University while the Lady Eagles shot down Adamson. Game One was a shocker. DLSU heading into the Finals are on a 14-game roll but were stunned in the first two sets with Ateneo stepping on the gas. But a string of miscues, mostly from the service line, did the Lady Eagles in as they allowed the Lady Spikers to force a decider. DLSU, smelling blood, punished Ateneo to eke out a 20-25, 17-25, 25-22, 25-22, 15-6, victory inside the Big Dome witnesses by 17,342-strong gate attendance. Then the series transferred to a newly-built, state-of-the-art Mall of Asia Arena that drew a crowd of 18,799. The first two frames were frustrating for the Lady Eagles.   Ateneo came back to life in the third set to gain a 9-5 lead. But DLSU easily erased it with Ateneo crumbling under pressure. The Lady Spikers were on an onslaught. Sophomore Galang pushed DLSU at matchpoint with a cold-blooded ace that went in a few inches from the baseline. The score, 24-16. It was a tense moment for the Fab 5. A long rally ensued in the next play. Gervacio, with all her might pounded a kill. Her hand making a great contact on the ball off Ferrer’s backset.     Smack! The ball ricocheted off the hands of DLSU’s Wensh Tiu before falling on the same landing area of Gervacio, who tried to dive for a dig together with Lazaro. DLSU swept Ateneo, 25-23, 25-20, 25-16. Game over.          “Kahit hindi kami nanalo alam naming ibinigay namin ang lahat namin, all-out talaga kaya wala kaming pagsisisi,” said Ho. It was the end of the Fab 5 era, but they left more than what any of them could have imagined. "I remember so many people or fans telling me that they started really watching UAAP Volleyball because of our batch. And that is really touching and fulfilling to know. Knowing that you were able to leave an impact like that to people. We were not able to bring even a single championship to our school, Ateneo, but we were able to touch a lot of people's hearts despite that," Nacachi shared. The Fab 5 closed a colorful chapter of Ateneo volleyball in tears. They were there during the Lady Eagles’ birth pains. They labored. They shed tears, blood and sweat. They laid the foundation for something big. The Fab 5 planted the seeds that would eventually bear fruit and would change the course of Ateneo women’s volleyball program forever. Glory didn’t happen during their time. It started in theirs.    Amidst the roar of the crowd, the falling confetti, banging of drums and the echoing chant of ‘Animo La Salle’ from the sea of green, the Fab 5 hugged each other tight. They found comfort in each other. It was their time to say goodbye. For those who remained – Valdez, Lazaro, Ahomiro, De Jesus – the defeat added fuel to their already blazing desire to bring glory for the blue and white. They were the next in line, heirs to unfinished business. WATCH: FAB 5 Reunion Part 1 and Part 2 --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 20th, 2018

DE JESUS: Genius, disciplinarian, champion coach

This story was originally published on May 7, 2017 De La Salle University head coach Ramil De Jesus came inside the press room of the Big Dome for a post-game interview wearing the same smile he had in the past nine times the Lady Spikers closed the UAAP season as champions. The only difference in those championship interviews were the players that accompanied him to answer questions from reporters. From Iris Ortega-Patrona, Desiree Hernandez, Maureen Penetrante, the legendary Manilla Santos, the Big Three of Cha Cruz, Paneng Mercado and Jacq Alarca, to Michel Gumabao and beast-mode-don’t-care Aby Marano to Ara Galang, Mika Reyes, Kim Dy and gem of a setter in Kim Fajaro – all of them stood beside a genius and architect of DLSU’s successful volleyball program. Victory after victory, De Jesus built his reputation as a one of the best women’s volleyball mentors in the country. Last Saturday, De Jesus added another feather to his cap when he steered the Taft-based squad to back-to-back titles in the 79th UAAP women’s volleyball tournament at the expense of archrival Ateneo de Manila. Two decades since his arrival to the school of a different shade of green after playing for Far Eastern University, delivered 10 titles and brought the Lady Spikers to the Finals 17 times.   De Jesus shared the secret of his success. “Siguro, sistema siguro then hard work. And then, well-disciplined ‘yung mga bata. Siguro, ‘yun ‘yung key,” he said. His success earned him the respect of his peers including three-time UAAP men’s volleyball champion Oliver Almadro of Ateneo, who was once one of his lieutenants, and players alike. DLSU embraced him as one of its own. “Natutuwa ako kasi kahit hindi ako alumnus doon niyakap nila ako bilang parang doon na din nag-graduate,” said De Jesus. “Hindi ko naman napapansin ang mga nanyayari sa akin sila lang ang nakakapansin, binigyan nga ako ng award. Happy, very happy (ako).” De Jesus is known to be a no nonsense coach. Strict, straightforward and a disciplinarian – traits he inherited from FEU men’s coach Kid Santos.                He doesn’t like fanfare and as much as possible keeps attention away from him. De Jesus carefully chooses his words but when he gives one, everybody listens. He means business all the time.   Brilliance of De Jesus 246-65. De Jesus knows how to win and his career win-loss record says it all. The main reason why DLSU trusted De Jesus to handle the team for that many years – a rare feat considering that a UAAP coach’s tenure is very volatile.   It was summer 20 years ago when former basketball Olympian and influential DLSU sport personality Ramoncito Campos brought in a young mentor in De Jesus to save the school’s volleyball program, which then had yet to win a title since joining the league in 1986.           He entered the UAAP volleyball scene during the time when powerhouse teams Far Eastern University and University of Sto. Tomas, then mentored by legendary coach August Sta. Maria, were the ones lording over here the competition. Of course the road to glory didn’t come easy but his first tour of duty gave DLSU a chance to feel what it was to be in the Final Four when the Lady Spikers finished fourth a year when after strings of forgettable seasons. Quenching the thirst to salvage some pride in the sport that will eventually be DLSU’s second most valued contest next to basketball, the Lady Spikers began to hunger for the crown – something the school never felt before since winning it all back in 1976 as a member of the NCAA.   De Jesus submitted his team to Spartan-like training and hammering discipline and slowly molded the Lady Spikers to a championship-caliber squad. In Season 61, DLSU challenged FEU for the crown but the Lady Tamaraws’ championship experience prevailed. The loss only fueled De Jesus’ desire to bring the Lady Spikers to the throne even more. With the core of ace hitter Ortega-Patrona, setter Valerie Bautista, Sally Macasaet, Sheryl Magallanes, Demelle Chua, Hollie Reyes and then sophomore Ivy Remulla, De Jesus steered DLSU on the right track for another shot at the crown. Midway in the season Bautista got pregnant. De Jesus, calm and composed, knew what to do. He converted open spiker Reyes into a setter and the gambit worked as DLSU once again punched a ticket to the Finals, this time against UST – a very hungry team looking to reclaim the title. A year removed from the throne, UST was ready for the kill. But the Espana-based squad went against a famished team – DLSU will not leave the sweltering University of the Philippines Human Kinetics Gym without the championship trophy. In front of a crowd - dwarf-sized compared to the multitude of fans that troop bigger venues of today – the Lady Spikers wrote history. DLSU slew a giant in a thrilling five-set game behind the stellar performance of Ortega-Patrona, who won that Season’s Most Valuable Player award – the first of many incredible volleybelles that will bag the highest individual honor under De Jesus’ tutelage.     It was an incredible feat but it won’t see a repeat in the next three years.              Grand Slam After their breakthrough title, the Lady Spikers had three straight bride’s maid finishes behind FEU. Heartbreaks brought by Ortega-Patrona’s falling out with De Jesus over a disciplinary issue in Season 63 and the unstoppable power of FEU's Monica Aleta, who won three straight MVP awards while towing the Lady Tams to a three-peat. Like a chess master, De Jesus learned from his mistakes before pulling off a feat that will cement his name as one of the greatest. With Hernandez, Penetrante and a young Santos as his main pieces, he steered the Lady Spikers to a rare three-peat. DLSU brought into heel FEU, UST and Adamson to complete a grand slam. A four-peat loomed for the celebrated Lady Spikers but fate played a cruel trick on them after UAAP suspended DLSU in Season 69 because the Green Archers' basketball squad fielded two ineligible players the previous year.       When the ban was lifted in Season 70, De Jesus and the Lady Spikers were again under the radar as title contenders together with the defending champion UST, FEU and Adamson. But team was forced to file a leave of absence from the school while the tournament was ongoing because Alarca saw action despite incomplete academic credentials to be eligible to play. All of the team’s won games where Alarca played where forfeited and the Lady Spikers ended up at seventh place. It was a painful setback but it also served as a rallying point for DLSU. With Santos playing her final year and the emergence of enigmatic but then rookie libero Mel Gohing in Season 71, the Lady Spikers denied the then graduating Rachel Anne Daquis and FEU back-to-back crowns. DLSU relinquished the throne to the Angeli Tabaquero and Aiza Maizo-led Tigresses the following year. The Lady Spikers avenged their loss the next season in a rematch with UST behind Alarca, Mercado, Cruz, Gumabao and Gohing in the start of De Jesus’ second three-peat.   DLSU-Ateneo rivalry Nobody really knows when UAAP volleyball picked up the tremendous following it has today. Maybe it needed something for people to get hooked into. A continuous rivalry, perhaps? For six straight years DLSU and Ateneo did just that. The storied rivalry between La Salle and Ateneo spilled from the basketball court to the taraflex mat of volleyball. De Jesus had in his bench the core of veterans Cruz, Gumabao and Marano back and freshmen Galang, Reyes and Demecillo when they met in the Season 74 Finals a young and promising Lady Eagles side – much like the Lady Spikers De Jesus inherited 14 seasons back. Led by Fille Cainglet, Dzi Gervacio and a fresh recruit from University of Sto. Tomas high school Alyssa Valdez, Ateneo gave DLSU a tough challenge for two seasons but the Lady Spikers repelled them both times. Then came Lady Eagles Thai mentor Tai Bundit. For three years in a row, De Jesus’ system bested the rest of the field including that of then Ateneo coach Roger Gorayeb. However, a coach who barely spoke English or Filipino provided him a challenge in Season 76. DLSU with an intact core led by Marano, swept its way straight to the Finals with a thrice-to-beat advantage. Ateneo crawled its way to the championship round through a series of do-or-die games. De Jesus is an old-school type of coach. His system is hinged on well-planned strategies and tactics. He was pitted against Bundit’s Thai-style of play anchored on a heartstrong mantra and a ‘happy, happy’ approach of the game. Bundit dances on the sideline, an animated fellow during the matches. De Jesus is stoic as always. When the two collided for the title for the first time, Bundit shocked De Jesus and DLSU when Ateneo beat them thrice in a four-game series that went the full distance. Bundit and the Valdez-led Lady Eagles did it again the following year, completing a season sweep at the expense of the Lady Spikers, who struggled to pose any form resistance in the Finals after Galang went down with a season-ending ACL tear in the semis. It was a devastating loss to say the least. But De Jesus, a general who fought many battles for the green and white, stuck with the weapon that brought him success – his ability to adjust. Outdueled by Bundit in their last six matches, De Jesus found a way to stop the rampaging Lady Eagles in their first meeting in Season 78. Ateneo equalized in the second round and even took the top spot after the elimination. The Lady Spikers and the Lady Eagles would eventually meet in the Finals for the fifth year in a row. De Jesus was ready for Ateneo. He knew the strengths and weaknesses of the Lady Eagles and used it to his advantage to win the series opener. The then graduating Valdez brought Ateneo back in Game 2 to tie the series, but DLSU completed its long-awaited revenge in the decider and gave Reyes, Demecillo and Galang a fitting sendoff gift.                  Road to back-to-back Losing five veterans including three of their key players heading into Season 79 gave De Jesus one of the toughest challenges he ever faced as a DLSU mentor.  Setter Kim Fajardo returned for her swan song together with fourth year playes Kim Dy, Dawn Macandili and Majoy Baron. Desiree Cheng also came back after a year of absence due to a knee injury, but De Jesus was still left to navigate with a relatively young crew.  “Sa laht nang nai-form kong team, ito yung medyo (up and down) yung performance,” he said. “Sobrang babaw ng bench, wala ka halos (mahugot) pagtingin mo, wala ka makuha.” DLSU struggled early and was on the losing end of two elims matches against Ateneo. “Ateneo nu’ng buong elimination NU lang ang halos tumalo. Sabi ko ano bang meron ang team na ito?” he said. “Pinilit lang naming habulin.” “Kasi alam ko nag-start kami medyo hilaw ang team namin. Early part ng first round natalo kami sa UP sabi ko pukpok pa tayo, habol pa,” De Jesus added. “Ang nakakatuwa sa mga bata, ang determinasyon na humabol nandoon.” When the De Jesus found himself leading the Lady Spikers to a sixth straight title series against Bundit and the Lady Eagles, he knew his squad was ready to defend their crown. And protect it they did in a series sweep capped by a dramatic five-set victory.    “Siguro buong eliminations, nire-review namin ang mga games, nakikita mo yung difference, ‘yung advantage at disadvantage ng team, so siguro doon kami nag-focus, kung saan kami medyo dehado. Concentrate kami sa training,” he said. “Ine-explain ko rin sa players kung ano yung dapat naming gawin, although mahirap. So, tanggapin na lang nila.” In a rare moment, when Ateneo’s Jho Maraguinot sent her attack long that signaled DLSU’s back-to-back championships, De Jesus let his hair down a little. He was jumping, dancing, celebrating the victory and even held his hands up, both his palms wide open as confetti dropped and the deafening roar of the crowd and banging of the drums echoed inside the arena. De Jesus won his tenth title. When the celebration subsided, De Jesus fashioned the same smile he wore in his past nine championships as he was led inside the pressroom of the Big Dome. Only this time around, Fajardo, Cheng and Dy were the ones who followed him from behind.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 20th, 2018

UAAP VOLLEYBALL: DLSU secures at least a playoff for a semis twice-to-beat advantage

Two-time defending champion De La Salle University secured at least a Final Four twice-to-beat advantage after taking down an also-ran but pesky University of Sto. Tomas side, 25-23, 25-23, 25-22, Sunday in the 80th UAAP women’s volleyball tournament at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. The Lady Spikers kept a tight grip of the top spot with a 10-2 win-loss record despite a rusty start brought by a long layoff. Kim Kianna Dy and Majoy Baron led the way for the Taft-based squad, which completed an elims sweep of the Tigresses.  Dy finished with 12 points anchored on eight spikes and four kill blocks and added six digs while Baron hammered six kills in her nine-point performance for DLSU. Aduke Ogunsanya scored eight while setter Michelle Cobb tallied 33 excellent sets for the Lady Spikers, whose last assignments are against Adamson University on Wednesday and Ateneo de Manila University on April 15. “Well ito 'yung isang sakit ng La Salle eh. Pagka long break, pag balik dito medyo kinakalawang,” said DLSU coach Ramil De Jesus. “So ito nga 'yung palagi kong nire-remind 'yung team na pagka ganitong mahabang bakasyon, pagbalik medyo hindi tama, maraming mga unforced error na ginagalaw. Parang hindi magkakakilala sa loob. “At least, ang importante ay yung result, naka-survive kami ng straight sets, pero medyo close 'yung laro,” he added. UST, which before the game were already booted out of the semis race picture following National University’s sweep of University of the East in the earlier match, dropped to 4-9 record. Sisi Rondina registered 23 points on 21 attacks, an ace and a block for the Tigresses while Fil-Italian Milena Alessandrini got 10 markers.         --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 8th, 2018

Espejo to join nat’l team tryout after Japan stint

Even with his credentials, Marck Espejo signified his intentions to join the tryouts for a spot in the men’s national volleyball team. Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Inc. president Peter Cayco said that the five-time UAAP Most Valuable Player, who is currently playing in the Japan V. Premier League, has communicated with head coach Dante Alinsunurin regarding his interest to don the tri-colors. “Si Marck Espejo nakipag-communicate kay coach Dante, na he is willing to undergo tryouts pagbalik niya,” Cayco told reporters Sunday. Espejo, who last played for the national team back in 2015 Singapore Southeast Asian Games and Asian men’s U-23 in Myanmar, has been one of Oita Miyoshi Weisse Adler’s go-to-guy. However, despite the efforts of Espejo, Oita Miyoshi continues to struggle and is currently ranked ninth in the 10-team field with only four wins and 19 losses. The Weisse Adler will close their elimination round on February 24 against FC Tokyo.   “Ngayon kung hindi raw sila pumasok sa semis, mukhang hindi eh, baka pauwiin siya ng maaga. Same case with the Santiago sisters (Jaja and Dindin),” said Cayco. Espjeo is one of the many hopefuls looking to land a spot in the national team that will compete in the AVC Men’s Club Championship, Asian Men’s Senior Championship in Iran and in the 30th Southeast Asian Games that the Philippines will host in November.     Almost 90 players joined the two-day national pool tryouts last weekend at the University of the East gym in Recto supervised by Alinsunurin, who steered National University to the UAAP throne last year and the country’s breakthrough gold medal in the ASEAN University Games. Alinsunurin was tapped by LVPI selection committee composed of the association’s vice president Joey Romasanta, treasurer Jeff Tamayo and chaired by Rod Roque as replacement for Sammy Acaylar.   The composition of the 20-man pool will be announced this week. “Next week ipo-forward na nila sa akin. Ang dami kasing nag-tryout. First was around 72 tapos kanina may nadagdag pang 15. ‘Yung Ateneo six of them nag-tryout together with their assistant coach,” said Cayco. LVPI is also finalizing an arrangement with a sponsor to form an U-23 team as well as forming a pool for the national beach volleyball team.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles     .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 11th, 2019

Lazio beats Inter on penalties to reach Italian Cup semis

By Daniella Matar, Associated Press MILAN (AP) — Lazio beat Inter Milan on penalties in the Italian Cup quarterfinals on Thursday, a result that will do little to dispel reports that Antonio Conte is in talks to become the next Nerazzurri coach. Lautaro Martinez and Radja Nainggolan had spot kicks saved as Lazio won 4-3 on penalties after the match ended 1-1 following Mauro Icardi's stoppage-time equalizer. Lazio will next play AC Milan. Atalanta faces Fiorentina in the other two-legged semifinal. It is the third successive year Lazio has reached the semifinals. It lost to Milan on penalties last season, while it beat Roma in 2017 but lost the final to Juventus. "If there was a team that should've won, it was Lazio," Immobile said. "We deserved it, then there was that penalty incident which forced us to postpone our celebrations. ... Now we hope to get our revenge on Milan." Inter goalkeeper Samir Handanovic pulled off a number of great saves to keep his side in the match but was surprised when Immobile's shot was deflected past him in the 108th minute after the Lazio forward had played a smart one-two with Felipe Caicedo. Matters almost went from bad to worse for Inter as defender Kwadwo Asamoah was shown a red card for a tackle on Sergej Milinkovic-Savic. However, the referee downgraded it to a yellow on video review. VAR came to Inter's assistance again when it was used to award a penalty for a Milinkovic-Savic foul on Danilo D'Ambrosio, after the referee had initially awarded a free kick. Lazio defender Stefan Radu was sent off for dissent and Icardi kept his cool under immense pressure to convert the penalty with the last kick of extra time. He also netted another penalty in the shootout, as did Marcelo Brozovic and debutant Cedric Soares for Inter. Handanovic saved from Riza Durmisi but Immobile, Marco Parolo and Francesco Acerbi were successful from the spot and Lucas Leiva converted the decisive penalty. It was Inter's third successive defeat and will pile the pressure on coach Luciano Spalletti. Earlier on Thursday, Conte was spotted walking past the Inter offices in the center of Milan. The former Juventus and Italy coach has been out of a job since being fired by Chelsea and he refused to respond to questions if he was in contact with Inter......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 1st, 2019

Coutinho nets 2, Barca routs Sevilla 6-1 to reach Copa semis

By Joseph Wilson, Associated Press BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — For Lionel Messi, Barcelona's 6-1 win over Sevilla on Wednesday that put it into the Copa del Rey semifinals means his team will aim for nothing less than another treble of titles. Barcelona completed the rare sweep of Copa del Rey, Spanish league and Champions League trophies in 2011 and 2015. Since then it has gone on to win all three editions of the cup and two more La Liga titles, but its failure to repeat in Europe had led to speculation that Barcelona would not prioritize the Copa del Rey this season to save energy. But Barcelona's commanding performance to overturn a 2-0 first-leg loss speaks otherwise. "They said that we didn't want to win this Copa," Messi said. "This team wants to fight for all three competitions. We are in it for everything and don't give anything away." Messi and Luis Suarez both scored late goals with the pair of star strikers back in Barcelona's starting lineup after getting some rest when their teammates lost in Seville. Phillipe Coutinho netted two goals in his best game of an up-and-down season for the Catalan club. Messi helped Coutinho get going by earning a foul in the area by Quincy Promes, and then stepping aside for his teammate to convert the spot kick. Barcelona goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen, who only regularly starts in the cup, made excellent saves to push Andre Silva close-range shot onto his post and stop Ever Banega's penalty after Gerard Pique fouled Roque Mesa. "Lionel was very generous with his teammate and Coutinho took on the big responsibility to open the scoring," said Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde. "The penalty saved by Cillessen kept us in the tie. When they took risks with the score 4-1, we found more space and finished them off." Ivan Rakitic turned in a perfectly-weighted long pass by Arthur for Barcelona's second goal in the 31st. Coutinho got his second in the 54th with a glancing header from Suarez's lobbed pass. Sergi Roberto played Messi wide, made a run into the area where Messi had a pass waiting for him to drill in a fourth goal in the 54th. Sevilla wing back Guilherme Arana blasted in a long strike in the 66th to give his team hope until Suarez and Messi rounded off the victory in the final minutes. Messi, who had missed two clear chances, culminated a brilliant buildup to take his haul this season in all competitions to 27 goals. "It is a tough loss," said Sevilla manager Pablo Machin. "It is very hard to head back to Seville after conceding six goals." Coutinho arrived a year ago to Camp Nou after Barcelona paid Liverpool a club record fee of 160 million euros (then $192 million). His erratic play this season had led Valverde to drop him from his group of unquestionable first-choice players, but he has scored in Barcelona's last two Copa del Rey ties to keep it on course to another title. BETIS ADVANCES Real Betis scored two goals in extra time to eliminate 10-man Espanyol and advance on a 4-2 aggregate score. Espanyol was leading thanks to Leo Bapistao's headed goal until Giovani Lo Celso leveled in the 76th. Espanyol had Marc Roca sent off stoppage time for second booking before Betis scored twice through Sergio Leon and Aissa Mandi......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 31st, 2019

NCAA Season 94 volleyball: San Beda denies Arellano U an outright Finals seat

No sweep. San Beda University denied two-time defending champion Arellano University an outright Finals berth after the Lady Red Spikers snapped the Lady Chiefs’ eight-game winning run, 16-25, 25-17, 25-19, 18-25, 16-14, Tuesday in the NCAA Season 94 women’s volleyball competition at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. The Lady Red Spikers stopped the Lady Chiefs right on their tracks to close the elimination round in a three-way tie at 8-1 win-loss record with their victims and College of St. Benilde. San Beda’s win put the semifinals in the usual Final Four format with the Lady Blazers and Arellano U taking the top two seeds and twice-to-beat incentives. The Lady Red Spikers will take on the Lady Chiefs in the Final Four starting Tuesday. CSB, which by virtue of superior quotient took the top seed, will still have to wait for its semis opponent between University of Perpetual Help (5-3) and Jose Rizal University (4-4). “Malaki sa amin ito kasi pampa-boost din ng morale para sa mga bata. Nakita namin na yung pinaghihirapan namin may resulta na maganda,” said San Beda coach Nemesio Gavino of the win in the rematch of last year' championship series. The Lady Red Spikers saved a match point off a block by Satrianni Espiritu on Necole Ebuen for a 14-14 tie. Jeziela Viray scored on another kill block before Nieza Viray sealed the crucial Lady Red Spikers win with an off the block. Nieza Viray finished with 17 points with all but 16 coming off attacks and 19 digs while skipper Cesca Racraquin posted 16 markers, 15 digs and 10 excellent receptions for an all-around play for San Beda. The Lady Red Spikers recovered from a 0-3 hole in the fifth set and even took a 13-12 lead off a net touch by Arellano U opposite hitter Regine Arocha. Princess Bello tied it at 13 before Ebuen scored on a crosscourt hit to put the Lady Chiefs at match point.       Ebuen saw her 23-point effort go down the drain while Bello and Arocha got 12 and 10, respectively, for Arellano U. Meanwhile, the Chiefs sealed the third seed in the semifinals after beating the Red Spikers, 17-25, 25-22, 25-16, 25-16, in men’s play. Jesrael Liberato and Christian Segovia finished with 18 and 16 points, respectively, for Arellano U, who finished their elimination round campaign with a 7-2 card. Christian Dela Paz added 11 markers for the Chiefs. Skipper Angelo Torres got 13 markers in his swan song for San Beda, which closed their emotional elims campaign at 2-7 just three days after the passing of Red Spikers head coach Nes Pamilar. In the juniors division, Arellano U defeated San Beda, 25-15, 25-21, 23-25, 25-19, to close the elims in a three-way tie at fourth spot. The Braves sealed their season with a 5-4 record tied with College of St. Benilde-LSGH and Emilio Aguinaldo College. The Brigadiers by virtue of superior quotient occupied the semis no. 4 berth. The Red Cubs finished their campaign winless in nine outings.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 15th, 2019

NCAA Season 94 volleyball: Para sa pride natin ito, San Beda tayo -- Racraquin

Even before stepping inside the court of the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan Tuesday against defending two-time champion Arellano University, San Beda University was already in a difficult situation. Win or lose, the Lady Red Spikers were already locked in a handicapped spot at third seed whether the NCAA Season 94 women’s volleyball competition goes on a Final Four or a stepladder semis format. If San Beda wins there will be a Final Four and they will still face the twice-to-beat Lady Chiefs. If Arellano U prevails, the Lady Chiefs will need to win in the first phase of the stepladder semis for the right to take on College of St. Benilde for the last Finals seat. Either way, San Beda was at a disadvantage. “Sa totoo lang sa team namin parang napa-isip kami kung ano bang mas maganda? Pilitin namin manalo or bigay na lang namin ‘yung game kasi parang pareho lang naman,” said skipper Cesca Racraquin. The Lady Red Spikes chose to protect their pride. “Pero sabi namin, hindi, para sa atin din ‘to. Para sa pride natin ‘to, San Beda tayo e,” Racraquin said. San Beda snapped the Lady Chiefs’ eight-game winning streak with a hard-earned 16-25, 25-17, 25-19, 18-25, 16-14, victory that force a three-way tie at 8-1 win-loss record tied with its victim and CSB. The Lady Blazers end up as the top seeds in the Final Four by virtue of superior quotient. San Beda’s win didn’t change the fact that the Mendiola-based squad still need to beat the Lady Chiefs twice in the Final Four. But for the Lady Red Spikers, it was the morale-boost they need to have heading into the semis Tuesday. “Malaki sa amin ito kasi pampa-boost din ng morale para sa mga bata. Nakita namin na yung pinaghihirapan namin may resulta na maganda,” said San Beda coach Nemesio Gavino, whose squad won all of its three five-set games in the elims. The Lady Red Spikers recovered from a 0-3 hole in the fifth set and even took a 13-12 lead off a net touch by Arellano U opposite hitter Regine Arocha. Princess Bello tied it at 13 before Necole Ebuen scored on a crosscourt hit to put the Lady Chiefs at match point.      The Lady Red Spikers saved a match point off a block by Satrianni Espiritu on Ebuen for a 14-14 tie. Jeziela Viray scored on another kill block before Nieza Viray sealed the crucial Lady Red Spikers win with an off the block hit. CSB will face in the semis the winner between Jose Rizal University and University of Perpetual Help on Thursday.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 15th, 2019

NCAA Season 94 volleyball: SSC-R, Perpetual dispute at least last semis spot playoff

San Sebastian College and University of Perpetual Help battle for at least a playoff for the last semifinals berth Monday in the NCAA Season 94 women’s volleyball tournament at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. Both teams put their Final Four hopes on the line when they meet inside the court at 12:00 noon. The match will air via livestream. The Lady Stags march into their final elimination round match hoping to avoid missing the Final Four for the second straight season. A series of misfortunes that pushed SSC-R outside of the top four with a 4-4 win-loss record tied with Jose Rizal University at fifth to sixth. The Lady Stags are on a three-game losing skid after a 4-1 start. SSC-R has yet to win a match this year. Another defeat coupled by the Lady Altas’ win against the Lady Bombers on Thursday will send the Lady Stags into an early vacation. In case SSC-R drops its last match and Perpetual also loses to JRU for a three-way 5-4 card there will be a playoff to determine who will advance in the semis. In this scenario, the teams with the lowest tiebreak will faceoff in a winner-take-all match for the right to face the squad with the highest quotient.   Meanwhile, College of St. Benilde shoots for at least a playoff for the no. 2 spot in the semifinals at 2:00 p.m. gainst Mapua University. The Lady Blazers are in a seven-game winning streak and are tied at second to third with San Beda University with 7-1 slate behind unbeaten defending two-time champion Arellano University (8-0). The Lady Cardinals hold a 1-7 mark.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles    .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 14th, 2019

NCAA Season 94: Lady Blazers collect seventh straight win

Before the start of NCAA Season 94 women's volleyball competition, College of St. Benilde head coach Jerry Yee laid out the team's goals and expectations. The Lady Blazers responded with one of the best seasons for the Taft-based squad since its title romp three years ago. CSB collected its seventh straight win in eight outings Friday at the expense of skidding San Sebastian College, 25-17, 25-16, 25-14, at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. The Lady Blazers moved up to a share of the second to third spot with idle San Beda University behind unbeaten defending two-time champion Arellano University (8-0). "Nag-usap kami ng mabuti. Yung expectations, nai-set natin, yung goals natin ni-lay natin sa table, kung anong kailangan kung kaya nila o hindi. Willing naman yung mga bata to sacrifice. So far it's working. Pero marami pang tatabrahuin like consistency," said Yee, whose squad will close the elimination round on Monday against Mapua University. Rachel Austero scored 13 points anchored on 10 attacks, two kill blocks and an ace to lead the Lady Blazers. Klarissa Abriam had 11 markers while Chelsea Umali posted eight points for CSB. The Lady Blazers are very much in the running for the no. 2 spot and a twice-to-beat advantage in a Final Four format.  In case Arellano U completes an elims sweep against San Beda coupled by CSBs win over Mapua, the Lady Blazers will occupy the no. 2 spot and will await the survivor between the no. 3 and no. 4 seeds in the knockout stepladder semifinals. The Lady Stags, on the other hand, were pushed on the brink of missing the semis for the second straight year after absorbing their third straight defeat. SSC-R fell to 4-4 card at fifth to sixth spot tied with Jose Rizal University.  Maryrhose Dapol and Joyce Sta. Rita scored eight points each for the Lady Stags, who will need to win against University of Perpetual Help on Monday and hope that the Lady Altas lose to the Lady Bombers on Thursday to force a playoff for the last semis seat. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 11th, 2019

NCAA Season 94 volleyball: San Beda out to prevent stepladder semis

With its primary goal of making it back in the Final Four accomplished, San Beda University now sets its sights on another pressing matter: prevent archrival Arellano University from sweeping the elimination round of the NCAA Season 94 women’s volleyball competition. The Lady Red Spikers joined unbeaten defending two-time champion Lady Chiefs in the semifinals after claiming their seventh win in eight games. Arellano U will face University of Perpetual Help on Thursday and if the Lady Chiefs hurdle the Lady Altas, it will now be up to San Beda to stop the grand slam-seeking squad from advancing outright into the Finals and prevent a dangerous knockout stepladder semifinals. The Season 93 Finals rematch is set on January 15.      “Para sa amin importante (na matalo namin ang Arellano U) kasi mahirap na dadaan ka sa stepladder kung ma-sweep nila ang elimination, said San Beda coach Nemesio Gavino, who steered the Mendiola-based squad to its third straight semis appearance. If the Lady Chiefs succeed in sweeping the elims, the no. 2 team will take on the survivor between the no. 3 and no. 4 teams in the knockout stepladder semis format. A loss by San Beda to Arellano U will also put the Lady Red Spikers in a precarious position especially with College of St. Benilde very much in the running for the no. 2 spot. The Lady Blazers currently hold a 6-1 slate and are in a six-game winning romp. CSB’s last two assignments are against struggling San Sebastian College and also-ran Mapua University.   “Mas maraming pagod ang pagdadaanan mo at mas maraming challenge (sa stepladder) kaya dapat maipanalo namin ang game against Arellano,” said Gavino. If San Beda beats Arellano U coupled by CSB dropping a match, the Lady Red Spikers will claim the Final Four twice-to-beat advantage. But in case of a tie at the no. 2 spot, there will be a playoff to determine who will be equipped with the last semis twice-to-beat advantage.      “Sa susunod na game iisipin namin kung ano ang pwedeng mangyari kasi may natitira pang games sa mga kalaban ganoon din sa amin,” said Gavino. “Para sa amin ang goal namin ay matalo muna ang Arellano.”   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 9th, 2019

St. Benilde halts JRU, moves closer to NCAA semis

College of St. Benilde turned back Jose Rizal University, 20-25, 25-17, 25-20, 25-22, yesterday to move one step away from claiming a Final Four spot in the women’s division of the 94th NCAA volleyball tournament at the Filoil Flying V Center in San Juan......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJan 8th, 2019

Lady Blazers thwart Lady Bombers, near semis

CSB could book a Final Four spot and join defending champion Arellano University there if it could beat either San Sebastian on Friday or Mapua on Monday......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJan 8th, 2019

NCAA Season 94 volleyball: Lady Chiefs clinch first semis seat

Defending champion Arellano University punched the first Final Four ticket after a quick work of winless Emilio Aguinaldo College, 25-19, 25-11, 25-8, Monday in the NCAA Season 94 women’s volleyball competition at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. It took the Lady Chiefs only 63 minutes to notch their seventh win in as many outings to keep their tight hold of the lead and more importantly secure a spot in the semifinals. Despite coming off a long holiday break, Arellano U showed no signs of rust. Head coach Obet Javier had a chance to experiment with his rotation, giving all of his wards playing time.  "Ni-remind ko lang yung mga bata kung ano yung target namin para sa game na ito. Siyempre, gusto naming itaas yung morale namin lalo," said Javier, whose squad advanced in their seventh straight semifinals apperance. Regine Arocha showed the kind of form expected from her in the Lady Chiefs final push in the elimination round as the hitter unleashed 14 points built on nine spikes, four aces and a kill block. Arocha, who struggled early in the season, added 11 digs. Last year’s rookie of the year Necole Ebuen got nine markers while Princess Bello finished with seven for Arellano U, who can march outright in the best-of-three Finals with wins over its last two games against University of Perpetual Help on Thursday and San Beda University on Tuesday. The Lady Chiefs handed the Lady Generals their eighth consecutive defeat. Jaylene Lumbo scored nine points for EAC, which will close the season on Friday against Lyceum of the Philippines University. Meanwhile, Arellano U secured at least a playoff for a Final Four spot in the men’s division after defeating EAC in five sets, 25-13, 25-18, 27-29, 16-25, 16-14, for a 6-1 slate at solo second spot. Christian Dela Paz led the Chiefs with 16 points while Kim Vincent Tan and Jesrael Liberato got 14 and 13 markers, respectively. Joshua Mina and Joshua Ramilo blasted 23 and 22 points, respectively, in a lost cause for the Generals, who fell to 5-3 card. In the juniors division, the Brigadiers upset the Braves, 25-14, 25-20, 25-19, to improve to 3-5 card. Arellano U slid to 4-3 slate.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 7th, 2019