FEU Dodges Disaster, Secures Head Start in SSL Bronze Battle by Beating Adamson
MANILA, Philippines — Far Eastern University flirted with disaster before turning back Adamson, 25-20, 25-19, 12-25, 14-25, 15-12, and inching closer to a bronze medal finish in the Shakey’s Super League (SSL) Collegiate Pre-Season Championship Season 2 on Friday night at Rizal Memorial Coliseum.
After the Lady Tamaraws blew a two-set lead, Faida Bakanke and Cherie Tagaod restored the order in the fifth set. Bakanke was nearly unstoppable scoring five of her 18 points and Tagaod putting on the finishing touches in Game 1 of the best-of-three bronze series.
“I reminded them that every set is back to zero so let us forget what happened in the earlier sets and work again this fifth set,” said FEU coach Manolo Refugia in Filipino. “The team’s character was tested. Knowing that we beat Adamson in the elimination, I think they became complacent after taking the first two sets. They lost the drive. At least the team showed its maturity in the end and we got the win.”
The Lady Tamaraws opened the game with a 2-0 lead but lost steam, allowing the Lady Falcons to catch up and tie the game behind the troika of Rochelle Lalongisip, Lorene Toring, and Lucille Almonte.
FEU has less than 24 hours for Game 2 on Saturday at 2 p.m., seeking to close out the series and its preseason stint with a bronze medal.
“We will leave everything on the floor. And for sure, the same goes for Adamson. It will all boil down to who wants it more,” Refugia said.
Tagaod finished with 12 points for FEU. Gerzel Petallo had eight points, as setter Tin Ubaldo provided the brilliant plays and led the team’s blocking with four kill blocks to finish with six points.
Adamson banked on Lalongisip, who scored five of her 15 points in the fifth. Toring had 14 points, while Almonte finished with 11 markers.
Meanwhile, College of Saint Benilde pulled off a come-from-behind 25-12, 20-25, 22-25, 29-27, 15-4 win over the University of the East to land in fifth place.
Gayle Pascual willed the Lady Blazers back from a 1-2 match deficit as she poured in 19 points, all coming from attacks. Zam Nolasco was also instrumental with 14 points including four blocks. Michelle Gamit and Jade Gentapa chipped in 12 points each, while Wielyn Estoque fired three aces to finish with 10 markers with setter Clone Mondoñedo orchestrating the offense.
Both teams are coached by Jerry Yee, who sat out in their clash, leaving his deputy coaches calling the shots for the respective squads.
Casey Dongallo carried the loads of UE with 23 points built on 18 attacks, three aces, and two blocks.
Ateneo escaped Arellano in five sets, 25-16, 20-25, 25-22, 22-25, 15-11, to take the seventh place.