UNIVERSITY of the Philippines had a huge six-run fifth inning to score an 9-1 win in an abbreviated match against University of Santo Tomas on Sunday and reach the finals against undefeated Adamson University in the UAAP Season 77 softball tournament at the Rizal Memorial Baseball Stadium.
Isabelle Mendoza hit a three-run homer in the fifth inning to give the Lady Maroons a big cushion and advance.
The series opener is set 9 a.m. on Tuesday, with the Lady Falcons holding a thrice-to-beat incentive after sweeping the 12-game eliminations.
"UP is already a winner. We want to clinch a Finals slot with Adamson and we met our objective," said long-time coach Kiko Diaz.
The Lady Maroons will at least match their finish in the 2010-11 season, when they placed second to the Lady Falcons, who then won the first of four consecutive championships.
UP, which last won the title in 2008, broke a 1-1 tie in the fourth after a Chantel Bongat hit sent DC and Dennise Cruz home.
UST's lone run came from Christine Palma in the second inning.
The Tigresses won the first match against the Lady Maroons, 7-2, to force the semifinals decider.
UST nipped National University, 4-3, in the first stepladder match.