- February 20, 2019 11:42
By Mark Steven Donque
The Far Eastern University (FEU) Lady Tamaraws scored another hard-earned victory as they shut down the Ateneo de Manila University (AdMU) Lady Eagles in five-thrilling sets, 10-25, 25-23, 25-22, 12-25, 15-8, in game one of the Final Four duel of the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) season 81 women’s volleyball tournament last May 4 at the Mall of Asia (MOA) Arena in Pasay City.
Despite being the underdogs in the match, the Lady Tamaraws remained composed especially in the fifth frame to snatch the win away from the Lady Eagles, forcing a rubber match in their Final Four showdown.
“Overwhelmed pero hindi pa tapos [‘yung laban] so hindi pa time to celebrate. Marami pa kaming mga bagay na i-fi-fix for game two (Overwhelmed but the game is not yet over so it’s not yet the time to celebrate. We still have a lot of things to address for game two),” FEU head coach George Pascua mentioned.
Bannered by graduating seniors, the team made sure that this will not be the end of their collegiate career as they played their hearts out.
Spearheaded by skipper Jerrili Malabanan, the graduating captain displayed leadership inside the court to guide the team to the win.
“I told the team earlier during the game that this wasn’t going to be our last game tonight. I’m really happy that we achieved that.” Malabanan expressed.
Veteran Heather Ann Guino-o refused to let this match be her season-ending game as she carried the scoring load for FEU, scoring a team-high of 17 points anchored on eight attacks, four blocks, and five aces.
“Sobrang saya sa pakiramdam kasi parang dito na namin malalaman kung last na namin ‘to or kung magtutuloy tuloy pa kami pero pinatunayan namin na hindi pa kami tapos (It really feels good because we will know here if this will be our end, or if we will extend our season, but we proved that we are not yet done),” Guino-o shared.
Capturing a big win, the team will prepare for the comeback of AdMU.
As what coach Pascua said, “I’m sure sa game two ibang team ‘yung makikita naming doon, ibang intensity (I’m sure in game two, we will witness a different team, different intensity).”
Jeanette Villareal finished the match with 10 points followed by eight of Jerrili Malabanan. France Ronquillo and Czarina Carandang combined for 10 markers, tallying seven and three points, respectively.
Playmaker Angelica Cayuna was also a major contributor in the match tallying four points with 19 excellent sets and 10 digs, while defensive specialist Ria Duremdes tallied a total of 44 excellent digs.
Now that both teams have an equal chance on making it to the Finals, coach Pascua shared, “’Yung chance namin na makalaban sila sa game two, hindi na namin pakakawalan. ‘Yun naman ‘yung gusto naming ma-achieve, ‘yung makaabot sa finals (We will never waste the chance to meet them in game two. That’s what we want to achieve, to enter the Finals).”
Gaining a morale-boosting win, the Morayta-based squad will resume their Finals bid on May 8 at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan City.
(See full album: UAAP 81 Women's Volleyball Final 4 - FEU vs Ateneo)