ADAMSON University ended the two-year reign of University of Santo Tomas following a 21-23, 21-17, 15-9 victory to complete a two-game championship sweep of the UAAP Season 76 women’s beach volleyball tournament Friday at the UE Caloocan sand court.
With their tenacious play and superb court coverage, Sheila Pineda and Amanda Villanueva showed superiority over Tigresses Maru Banaticla and Pam Lastimosa in bringing back the trophy which the school last hoisted in 2010.
The victory was sort of a sweet revenge for Adamson, which was swept last year in the Finals by UST then represented by Banaticla and Judy Caballejo.
With their third championship, the Lady Falcons are now the league's winningest women's beach volleyball team.
“After three years, nabigyan ko na rin ng title ang Adamson. Iba pa rin kapag champion. It was very fulfilling, since last playing year ko na ito,” said Pineda, who was named the tournament MVP.
A Best Server awardee last season, Pineda also paid tribute to Villanueva, who had improved her game on the sand court compared to the last three seasons.
“Sobrang tiwala ako kay Amanda (Villanueva), kahit bumibitaw kami hindi kami nagkakanya-kanya. Naguusap-usap kami,” she added.
The Tigresses took the opening frame after Lastimosa scored the set-clinching hits and were poised to send the series to a deciding Game 3 after taking a 16-12 advantage in the second.
But the Lady Falcons never gave up, converting nine of the second set's 10 points to force a decider.
With fatigue setting in on Banaticla, UST could not get its rhythm going in the third set as Villanueva torched the net with three consecutive kills for Adamson to pull away for good, 12-6.
Kyla Atienza of Far Eastern University was named Rookie of the Year.
In the men's division, National University moved closer to retaining the crown with a 21-10, 18-21, 15-11 Game 2 win over UST.
The Growling Tigers took the Finals opener, 21-15, 21-17, halting the Bulldogs' seven-game winning streak.
Game 3 is set on Monday. The deciding match, if necessary, will also be played on the same date.