Lady Altas escape Lyceum in NCAA volley

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Perpetual Help leaned on other sources when starters Cindy Imbo and Ma. Lourdes Clemente struggled as it edged Lyceum of the Philippines University, 25-21, 29-27, 25-23, on Friday to keep its Final Four hopes afloat in the women’s division of the 92nd NCAA volleyball tournament at the Filoil Flying V Center in San Juan City.

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Imbo, the team captain, and Clemente started but couldn’t find their rhythm at the start, forcing Perpetual Help coach Sammy Acaylar to dig deep from his bench.

Good thing Jamela Suyat, Coleen Bravo and Jowie Albert Versoza came through with clutch performances by firing 19, 13 and 11 points, respectively, to power the Lady Altas to their fourth win against three defeats.

Reserves Maria Aurora Tripoli and Shyra Mae Umandal also came through by combining for 11 hits while providing the much-needed help on defense.

“I have faith in all my players that they will deliver if given a chance,” said Perpetual Help coach Sammy Acaylar, who was recently appointed as national men’s team coach seeing action in the Kuala Lumpur Southeast Asian Games this August.

For the Las Pinas-based school to stay in Final Four contention, it would need to beat Jose Rizal on Jan. 18 and Arellano U on Jan. 25.

“We know in our hearts that we’re still in it, we just have to believe,” said Acaylar.

The Lady Pirates skidded to 5-2.

Earlier, Emilio Aguinaldo downed Mapua, 25-18, 25-13, 26-24, in a battle of winless squads.

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