By Michael Angelo S. Murillo
UNIVERSITY Athletic Association of the Philippines Season 81 women’s volleyball action resumes today after the Lenten break with league-leading Ateneo Lady Eagles looking to secure a twice-to-beat advantage in the next round.
Currently atop the standings with a 10-2 record, the Lady Eagles play the Adamson Lady Falcons (1-11) in the scheduled 4 p.m. match at the FilOil Flying V Arena in San Juan City with an eye on the victory that will notch for them one of the two twice-to-beat keys in the Final Four.
Ateneo, however, comes into the game off its second loss of the season, bowing anew to the defending champions De La Salle Lady Spikers in three sets, 25-17, 25-13 and 25-23, on April 13.
The loss stopped for the Lady Eagles what was an impressive 10-game winning streak.
Against La Salle the second time around, Ateneo struggled to get its game going and never gave the Lady Spikers the fight that many were expecting from a league-leading team, more so it was the same team that tripped it at the onset of the ongoing tournament.
No one from the Lady Eagles scored in double digits, with Ponggay Gaston leading with seven markers.
Bea De Leon, Kat Tolentino and Maddie Madayag each had six points apiece, all considerably down from their season averages.
Ateneo coach Oliver Almadro lamented the kind of performance they had last time around, recognizing that they just “did not have it” on said day.
He expressed hope though that they would be able to regroup and get back on the swing of things moving forward.
Looking to derail Ateneo’s push today are the Lady Falcons, who are angling to finish what has been a rough and tough season on a positive note.
Adamson has lost eight straight games since winning its lone game this season under Onyok Getigan, who replaced Air Padda as Lady Falcons coach midway.
Bern Flora and Eli Soyud are leading the Adamson offense with 10.5 and 10.4 points, respectively.
Meanwhile, in the first game at 2 p.m. will be the clash between La Salle (9-3) and the University of the East Lady Warriors (3-9).
Both teams are coming off victories in their last matches, La Salle over Ateneo and UE over Adamson.
The Lady Spikers with the win today would fortify their hold on a top-two finish and the twice-to-beat advantage that goes with it.
UE, meanwhile, is fighting for pride and a strong finish to a campaign which has seen it compete better than what its record shows.