UNIVERSITY of the Philippines got back on the winning track, downing cellar-dwelling University of the East, 25-23, 25-22, 25-14, on Sunday in the UAAP women’s volleyball tournament at Philsports Arena.
The Lady Maroons tightened their grip on third spot with their seventh victory in 11 outings, bouncing back from a four-set loss to perennial title contender La Salle.
UE had flashes of brilliance and at one point looked about to steal a set from an uncharacteristically error-prone UP, but the Lady Maroons somehow pulled off some solid plays and stayed firmly on track for the semifinals.
UE led, 6-3, and held on before UP fought back to gain control, 23-21, in the opening set. The Lady Warriors tied the match at 23 before the Lady Maroons took the set.
With their 11th loss in as many matches, the Lady Warriors are in danger of finishing another season winless. UE has lost 56 straight matches.
Rookie Isa Molde and sophomore Marian Buitre scored 12 points apiece for UP. Kathy Bersola and Nicole Tiamzon were benched in the second and third sets to give younger players some playing time.
First-year players Diana Carlos, Justine Dorog and Sheena Chopitea combined for 17 points for the Lady Maroons.
“I want to give extra playing time sa iba. Paminsan-minsan hahanapan mo rin ng oras ‘yung mga bago,” said UP coach Jerry Yee.
“Pangit pa rin ang start we were trying to practice some things pero nahihirapan pa. Practice pa talaga ang kailangan, very bad start,” said Yee.
Shaya Adorador finished with 13 points for UE.