ARELLANO University overcame a first set loss and withstood a late University of Perpetual Help System Dalta fightback in the fourth to carve out a 18-25, 25-16, 25-19, 26-24 victory and inch closer to an outright Finals berth yesterday in the NCAA women’s volleyball tournament at the FilOil Flying V Centre.
After squandering a huge lead in the fourth, the Lady Chiefs took a sigh of relief after the Lady Altas committed consecutive attack errors, giving the defending two-time champions their eighth straight victory.
“Tiwala lang ako sa player ko,” said Arellano mentor Obet Javier.
Necole Ebuen had 16 points, including four blocks, while Regine Arocha chipped in 11 points, including three service aces, 16 digs and nine receptions for the Lady Chiefs.
Setter Sarah Verutiao was also impressive with 20 excellent sets, 14 digs and five points for Arellano.
The Lady Chiefs struggled with their passing that caused their opening set defeat.
“Nag-start kasi iyon sa bad error kaagad. Nasimulan ng palpak, nagkasunud-sunod hanggang huli. Limang service error ang ibinigay namin plus receive error. Mabuti na lang, nakabawi noong second set,” said Javier.
Arellano hopes to correct these flaws as it vies for a sweep and more importantly, an outright passage in the best-of-three championship against San Beda in a rematch of last season’s title showdown on Tuesday.
Perpetual Help dropped in a tie with San Sebastian in fourth spot at 4-3, and is just ahead by half-a-game over idle Jose Rizal University (4-4).
The Lady Altas are bracing for a tough schedule next week to close out their elimination round campaign as they now need to beat the Lady Stags and the Lady Bombers to make it to the semifinals.
Cindy Imbo, whose spike hit the net that turned out to be the match point, had 13 points, 20 digs and 14 receptions for Perpetual Help.
Earlier, Miracle Mhae Mendoza came through with 21 points while Katleen Dela Cruz contributed 18 hits, including two service aces, as Letran outlasted Mapua, 14-25, 26-24, 23-25, 25-17, 15-13, for its second win in eight contests.