ATENEO rained Philippine Army with service aces to prevail, 25-19, 19-25, 21-25, 25-21, 16-14, and stayed alive a semifinals berth in the Shakey's V-League Season 11 Open Conference at The Arena in San Juan on Tuesday.
Alyssa Valdez finished with 28 points, Amy Ahomiro added 19 and Michelle Morente contributed 17, including 10 of the Lady Eagles’ 16 service aces.
Morente’s five consecutive service aces down the stretch made the difference in Ateneo’s fourth straight win in the quarterfinals to improve to a 4-5 slate.
“Sobrang proud ako sa teammates ko, (buhay pa kami) so sana magtuluy-tuloy itong panalo namin," said Valdez.
Down 5-9 in the fifth and final set, Ateneo scored six straight points, five from Morente's service aces to take the lead at 11-9.
Rachel Anne Daquis gave life to the exhausted Lady Troopers, 12-11, but an exchange of errors tied the contest at 14-all, before Jia Morado scored back-to-back service aces to keep perfect Ateneo’s quarterfinal record perfect.
"Nire-remind lang kami ni coach (Tai Bundit) lagi na when you're giving your all you have nothing to lose," said Valdez.
Daquis, the former Far Eastern University star, had 23 points for Army, while Jovelyn Gonzaga, Nene Bautista, and Ging Balse combined for 37 points.
Army, the first team to secure a semifinals berth, remained on top with a 6-3 card despite the loss.