La Salle reasserts mastery over Ateneo in UAAP Season 84 opener

By Ardyn Gonzales

The De La Salle University Lady Spikers extended its winning streak against the defending champions Ateneo de Manila University Blue Eagles after a four-set victory, 22-25, 25-23, 25-18, 25-20, in the opening game of the UAAP Season 84 women’s volleyball, Thursday, at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.

After losing the first set against Ateneo, La Salle almost faced a 0-2 set deficit with the Lady Spikers trailing in the second frame at 18-21. Coach Ramil de Jesus called a time-out and La Salle responded with a 6-2 run led by Baby Jyne Soreno and rookie Alleiah Malaluan to steal the set.

The Lady Spikers never looked back in the succeeding sets as they capitalized on the receiving errors of the Blue Eagles. Faith Nisperos tried to mount a comeback for Ateneo in the fourth but after tying the match at 18-all, Thea Gagate and Jolina dela Cruz stopped the bleeding with back-to-back attacks.

La Salle made a repeat of the UAAP Season 82 opening four-set victory against their rivals.

Baby Jyne Soreno led the Lady Spikers with 17 points off 13 attacks, 3 blocks, and 1 service ace, as the blue-chip rookie Alleiah Malaluan announced her much-awaited UAAP seniors’ debut with a triple-double performance. She tallied 15 points, on top of 15 excellent digs and 11 excellent receptions.

Faith Nisperos carried the Ateneo squad with 24 points.

In the other opening matches, UST Lady Tigresses, NU Lady Bulldogs, and UP Lady Maroons also won their respective games, as Ateneo, FEU, Adamson, and UE fell to 0-1 standing.

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