Defending champion Ateneo De Manila University swept the first round after outlasting archrival De La Salle University in five sets, 25-22, 25-27, 16-25, 25-14, 15-9, to stay undefeated in the University Athletic Association of the Philippines Season 77 women’s volleyball on Sunday at the Mall Asia Arena in Pasay City.
Ateneo stayed on top with a clean 7-0 mark while La Salle dropped to second with 6-1.
Hard-hitting Alyssa Valdez fired 26 points, including 20 kills, while Amy Ahomiro scattered 13 points and Jorella Marie De Jesus had nine points for the Lady Blue Eagles.
In the first game, National University (NU) banked on the steady game of Jaja Santiago to score a 25-17, 25-16, 22-25, 25-19 win over Adamson University.
The Lady Bulldogs grabbed the solo third spot with a 4-3 card.
The long-legged and high-leaping Santiago delivered 26 points, including 21 kills and five blocks, while Myla Pablo added 15 points and Desiree Dadang contributed seven points.
“All the eight teams wanted to be in the top four. I don’t like to be on below four of course, but let’s be on top four,” said NU mentor Roger Gorayeb. “We are now 60 percent in just five days of practice. We just have to push more.”
Amanda Villanueva led Adamson with 14 points while Mylene Paat and Jessica Galanza combined for 23 points as the Lady Falcons dropped to 3-4 win-loss slate for a share of fourth with Far Eastern University and University of the Philippines.
In the men’s side, Ateneo downed NU, 20-25, 25-21, 18-25, 25-19, 15-10, with last season’s Rookie-MVP Marck Espejo drilling in 26 hits and Ysay Marasigan adding 15 points.
The Blue Eagles ended their first-round stint with a 5-2 slate, while the Bulldogs ended on top despite the loss with a 6-1 card.