LOUIE Ramirez unleashed 18 points as University of Perpetual Help swept College of Saint Benilde, 25-17, 25-15, 25-19, in an early Finals rematch in the NCAA Season 95 men’s volleyball tournament.
Despite the departure of two-time MVP Joebert Almodiel, the Altas remained dominant as Ramirez proved to be a revelation in his first NCAA game as outside hitter on Friday at The Arena in San Juan City.
Ramirez, a former middle blocker, was efficient in attacking with a 17-of-36 frame. Rookie Kenry Malinis and skipper Ronniel Rosales had 11 points each while another newcomer, Hero Austria, added seven markers on top of 15 excellent receptions and nine digs.
“I always tell my players that they are going to play for the school and the community. It's very hard kasi na defending champion ka to maintain the championship,” said Altas head coach Sammy Acaylar.
“Sabi ko lang sa kanila na ensayado tayo, well-prepared tayo physically, mentally and (spiritually).“
Perpetual Help has yet to lose a game since 2018, earning its 13th straight victory in its first game in Season 95.
“Never ko tinatak sa isipan ko na kailangan wala akong talo, kailangan ma-straight ko 'yun, hindi ko iniisip 'yun. Ang iniisip ko lang lagi na, of course, championship,” Acaylar said. “Siyempre pride ng Perpetual, gusto ko on top of the NCAA. Pero siyempre bilog naman 'yung bola eh, hindi natin alam.“
Vince Abrot almost single-handedly carried St. Benilde with 12 points and 14 excellent receptions but his squad struggled on offense, converting only 28 attacks out of 91 attempts.
CSB also didn’t score a single ace out of its 53 serves.