National University overpowered Perpetual Help even without Jaja Santiago, posting a 25-10, 21-25, 25-16, 27-25 victory to join San Sebastian College in the quarterfinal round of the Shakey’s V-League Season 13 Collegiate Conference at the Philsports Arena in Pasig on Wednesday.
Roselyn Doria and Aiko Urdas took charge for the Bulldogs, combining for 29 hits, while Risa Sato backed them up with 12 points and Jasmine Nabor added 11 markers while dishing out 62 excellent sets for the defending champions.
Though they struggled a bit in the second frame and were dragged by the Lady Altas in an extended fourth set duel, the Lady Bulldogs proved too powerful for the Las Piñas-based squad, coming away with 56 attack points, more than doubling their rivals’ measly 27-spike output.
The win was NU’s third straight as it regained the solo lead in Group A, boosting its record heading to the carryover quarters starting next week where they will be joined by Group A qualifiers University of the Philippines, Far Eastern U and University of Santo Tomas.
Santiago, a key figure in NU’s title-retention bid in the mid-season conference of the league sponsored by Shakey’s, didn’t see action to anchor a team in another tournament.
But Doria, Urdas and company got the job done just the same, fashioning out the victory in one hour and 38 minutes.
Perpetual, which dropped all its four games in the elims of the tournament backed by Mikasa as official ball and Accel as official outfitter, was led by Ma. Lourdes Clemente, who fired 12 hits, including five blocks. Jhonna Rosal had seven while Alyssa Sanggalang and Jowie Verzosa chipped in six markers apiece.
The win also primed up the Lady Bulldogs in their showdown with the back-to-the-wall Ateneo Lady Eagles (1-2) on Saturday where the latter need a win to force a playoff for the third and last quarters berth against the Technological Institute of the Philippines Lady Engineers (2-2).