DEFENDING champion Adamson and University of Santo Tomas will dispute the UAAP women’s softball championship for the third straight time.
This, after the Lady Falcons struggled past National University, 2-1, and the Growling Tigresses eased past a fighting University of the East side, 6-5 in a pair of thrilling semifinal encounters on Thursday at the eight decade-old Rizal Memorial Ballpark.
Both games were decided on errors with Adamson, which is aiming to extend its seven-year reign, ending a seven-inning drought with a run in the seventh and final frame on a fielding error by NU’s shortstop Elsie dela Torre.
UST, for its part, earned the second finals slot by coming back from a 3-4 deficit with three runs in the last three frames, including one in the extension on a miscue.
Both Adamson and UST enjoyed twice-to-beat advantage after finishing one-two at the end of the eliminations. Both needed just one game to march on.
With one out, Adamson rightfielder Jenet Rusia got the ball roling at the bottom of the seventh when she took first on base-on-balls, advanced to second on a sacrifice by Flor Pabiania and dashed home on a hard shot by Krisha Cantor.
The Lady Bulldogs jumped the gun on the opposition with a run right at the top of the first inning on a base-on-balls, a sacrifice and a double by third basegirl Shine Nietes.
The Lady Falcons equalized at the lower half of the inning courtesy of Reizel Columbres, who greeted losing pitcher Mia Macapagal with a lead off two-base-hit. She was sacrificed by leftfielder Lelie Binabjaye from were she crossed the plate on anoher double by catcher Dely Cobasrubias.
“As I expected, NU’s defense could have been our waterloo,” Adamson coach Ana Santiago said. “Yun depensa talaga ng NU ang kintatatakuan ko. It’s good we survived them again today.”
He Lady Falcons and the Tigresses battle anew for all the marbles in a best-of-three title series starting Tuesday.
The Lady Falcons will be trying to reassert their supremacy over the Tigresses, who they have deprived of a championship the past two seasons.
The Tigresses, on the other hand, will attempt to end UST’s 18-year title dry spell.