Two seasons ago, University of Santo Tomas stopped Adamson University’s long 73-game winning run in the UAAP Women’s Softball Championship. The Lady Falcons though hacked out a 19-game victory streak after that en route to completing a seven-peat title rampage last year.
That winning skein remained after an outhit University of the East downed an erratic Adamson side, in a 3-2 upset triumph that rocked the tournament Monday in Day 2 of the second round hostilities at the historic Rizal Memorial playing field.
With the Lady Warriors’ first line of defense in pitchers Loraine Collado, who manned the mound for 1-1/3rd inning, and portly Lovely Redaja coming in relief for 5-2/3rd, the Recto-based sluggers forced the Lady Falcons into five costly errors, three in the first two innings where they greeted Adamson starter Princes Jurado with two runs.
The Lady Warriors were outhit, 6-10, by the defending champions, but were able to bring three of the girls they sent to the bases home either on sacrifices or legitimate hits.
Shortstop Ma. Lourdes Blanco, first in UE’s batting order, reached first on a Jurado misplay right at the top of the opening frame. She advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by cenferfielder Josephine Francisco and crossed the plate from there on a base-on-balls.
The second frame was no different. Designated player Michelle Mercado singled o left, proceeded to second on another boner, this time by the normally efficient Adamson third-basegirl Nichole Padasas. Mercado then sent her DP teammate cross the plate on a sacrifice fly to deep right.
The eight-peat seeking Lady Falcons cut the Lady Warriors’ 2-0 advantage with a run courtesy of a base-hit each of rightfielder Jenette Rusia and Padasas at the bottom of the second, but UE countered and decided the outcome with finality with insurance run provided by pinch hitter Jonavie Jerezano’s single.
Adamson coach Ana Santiago took the loss with a grain of salt though, saying: “Well, this happens in any sports competition. Sabi nga, you can’t win ‘em all. It’s good this happened this early at hindi sa crucial stage ng tournament.
“Errors ang tumalo sa amin. That was a lesson for us to learn. Hindi dapat maging complacent. Lahat ng team puwedeng manalo at lahat ng team puwedeng matalo. Pare-parehong nag-train kami para sa tournament na ito. Mahaba pa naman ang torneo. Hindi pa naman dapa mag-panic. Malaki pa ang panahong maka-recover.”
“Nakasuwerte kami. Kailangan na kasing manalo or bagsak ka sa standing,” was all UE head mentor Edzel Bacarisas could only murmur after his red and white-clad girls’ triumph.
Despite that setback, Adamson still leads the seven-team field with a superior -1 win-loss slate with UST, which drew a bye Monday, following with a 5-2 card. UE and National University, 5-1 winner over Ateneo also Monday, remain sharing the third and fourth places.
La Salle edged University of the Philippines, 5-4, and shares the fifth and sixth positions with their victim at similar 3-4 record. Ateneo has yet to win following seven unsuccessful starts.