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NU pips UST in Shakey’s V-League

— Manila Bulletin:

Games Tomorrow
(The Arena, San Juan)
2 p.m. – SWU vs St. Benilde
4 p.m. – Perpetual vs San Sebastian

Defending champion National University survived University of Santo Tomas’ spirited comeback to eke out a thrilling 25-19, 25-22, 18-25, 24-26, 15-10 win yesterday in the Shakey’s V-League Season 11 First Conference at The Arena in San Juan.

Carmina Aganon led the Lady Bulldogs this time by firing 17 points, including a sharp kill that sealed their second win in as many games and the early lead in Group B.

Leading 11-10 in the deciding set, NU shifted its offense to a high gear with 6-foot-1 Dindin Santiago scoring back-to-back kills, Ivy Perez unleashing an ace and Aganon producing the game-clinching point.

Six-foot-3 Jaja Santiago, Dindin’s sister, added 14 points for NU including five blocks, while Aiko Urdas, Dindin, and Myla Pablo chipping in 11 hits apiece.

“Normal situation, nag-relax kami nung third and fourth set tapos gumanda laro ng UST. In-improve lang namin yung reception namin sa fifth set,” said NU coach Ariel Dela Cruz.

NU looked headed for a straight-set win after winning the first two sets, but UST, led by Ria Meneses, fought back to dominate the third set and force another set.

A furious exchange of shots highlighted the fourth set with UST prevailing through a combination of power plays and rock-solid defense.

That was supposed to give UST the momentum going into the deciding set. But the Tigresses failed to sustain their drive, allowing NU to seize the initiative after racing to a 6-1 lead.

The Lady Bulldogs held on to that advantage with their tough defensive effort.

Incoming collegiate freshman EJ Laure, daughter of former MBA star and current Alaska veteran Eddie Laure, exploded for 23 points in her first tournament but her effort was not enough to lift UST to victory.

Meneses, niece of Jose Rizal University (JRU) coach Vergel Meneses, unloaded 16 points for the Tigresses, highlighted by eight blocks.

Pam Lastimosa, sister of Barako Bull player Carlo Lastimosa, and Carmela Tunay contributed 14 and 12 hits for UST, respectively.

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NU pips UST in Shakey’s V-League (Sports) | March 31, 2014 at 12:00AM

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