CSB Lady Blazers start bid for back-to-back in NCAA volley against Perpetual Lady Altas
Focus will be on Jeanette Panaga as she tries to lead the Lady Blazers to the title anew. Dante Peralta

COLLEGE of St. Benilde launches its back-to-back title bid as it squares off with Perpetual Help on Monday as the 92nd NCAA women's volleyball competition opens at The Arena in San Juan.

Men's titlist Perpetual Help, meanwhile, opens its title-retention campaign as it clashes with St. Benilde on Wednesday.

The Macky Carino-coached Lady Blazers stunned the heavily favored San Sebastian squad led by Grethcel Soltones to claim their first title and now look to make it two straight.

Last season's Finals MVP Jeanette Panaga and veteran Ranya Musa are back to lead the title bid.

Perpetual Help enters the NCAA tournament confident after finishing second to University of Sto. Tomas in the University Games in Dumaguete City last month.

The CSB-Perpetual Help match is set at 2 p.m. after the opening ceremony featuring St. Benilde's dance group that won a world hip-hop dance contest this year.

The power-hitting Soltones, the reigning back-to-back MVP, will also be out to win it all this season after two straight failed attempts as the Lady Stags jumpstart their campaign against the Arellano Lady Chiefs, the champions two years ago, in the 4 p.m. match.

"Hopefully, we'll win it this year," said Soltones, who also won the MVP award in the V-League Season 13-Open Conference.

In the men’s tournament, Perpetual Help parades an almost intact line up headed by the Taneo brothers Rey and Reylan, who led the Altas to the title last year.


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