ATENEO is in line for the first UAAP women's volleyball season sweep in 11 years following the defending champion's emphatic three-set win over De La Salle on Wednesday.
The Lady Eagles’ 25-18, 25-19, 25-19 victory over the Lady Spikers moved them a win away from completing an unbeaten run through 16 games in Season 77.
They have a shot at completing that rare feat when Game Two is played on Saturday.
La Salle, incidentally, was the last team to win a title with an undefeated record after a 14-game sweep of the tournament back in 2004.
And why the lesser number of games?
At the time, the league rules on volleyball had the team being declared outright champion once it completes a sweep of the entire elimination round which La Salle did.
But the rule has since been changed following the fate suffered by the University of the East men’s basketball team during the 2007 season.
Then bannered by the likes of Marcy Arellano, Mark Borboran, James Martinez and an emerging guard by the name of Paul Lee, the Warriors won all of their 14 games in the eliminations to earn an outright berth in the finals.
Unfortunately, UE got swept in the Finals by Jayvee Casio and De La Salle, 2-0.
Shortly after, the league made sweeping changes to its rules by giving more incentives to any team which sweeps the double-round eliminations, hence the thrice-to-beat incentive was introduced.
Ateneo was the first to overcome such hurdle a season ago when it beat La Salle in the finals despite the Lady Spikers enjoying a thrice-to-beat advantage following a 14-game sweep of the eliminations.
Counting their sweep of the Finals’ last two games a season ago, the Lady Eagles are actually 17-0 going to Game Two of their title series against the Lady Spikers this Saturday at the Mall of Asia Arena.