TECHNOLOGICAL Institute of the Philippines shook off early jitters, coming back from two sets down to beat De La Salle Dasmarinas, 20-25, 17-25, 25-23, 25-20, 15-8, in the Shakey’s V-League Season 12 Collegiate Conference at The Arena in San Juan on Sunday.
Lady Engineers, a grand slam champion in the Universities and Colleges Athletic Association (UCAA) league, struggled to find their rhythm as they took all of two sets to find their feet in the premier league.
But once they did, there was no turning back.
“Hinintay ko sila maka-recover, bago kasi sa amin itong ganitong environment,” said TIP coach Boy Paril. “Hindi kami sanay maglaro sa malamig, sa maliwanag, sa televised at maraming nanonood kaya inantay ko lang maka-recover ang team."
The Lady Engineers overhauled a two-set deficit then broke loose from a 4-4 tie in the fifth to take command, 9-6, in an mistake-strewn game that saw TIP make 44 errors to De La Salle's 38.
DLSD skipper Iumi Yongco and Cherry Rose Nunag kept the Lady Patriots’ hopes alive, 8-12, but Michelle dela Cruz sparked a closing 3-0 spurt to give the Lady Engineers their first win in the league.
“Sobra (kinakabahan), kitang-kita naman sa mga bata ‘yung mga labi nila namumutla na,” said Paril.
Dela Cruz came off the bench to deliver 17 points while Alyssa Layug, a transferee from University of the Philippines, added 12 as the Lady Engineers joined Ateneo and College of St. Benilde at the top of Group B.
Rochelle Anne Fidel contributed seven for TIP.
Nunag finished with 14 points, from 11 spikes, two blocks and a service ace, for the Lady Patriots, while guest player Desiree Dadang added 11.