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Ateneo survives Mojica’s record 41 hits

Joey Villar (The Philippine Star) - August 19, 2015 - 10:00am

Games Aug. 24

1 p.m. – UP vs EAC

3 p.m. – La Salle vs FEU

5 p.m. – NCBA vs Ateneo

 

MANILA, Philippines - Ateneo survived Howard Mojica’s league-record 41 hits as it repulsed Emilio Aguinaldo College, 25-21, 20-25, 25-23, 25-23, in a duel of collegiate champions to clinch the first semifinal berth in the Spikers’ Turf Season 1-Collegiate Conference at The Arena in San Juan yesterday.

In a clash of high-flying, power-hitting spikers, the Eagles prevailed over the Generals as Marck Espejo, Ysarel Marasigan, Joshua Villanueva and Rex Intal combined for 58 hits to negate Howard’s astounding performance spiked by 38 kills he laced with two aces and a block.

But the Eagles played more as a team with Espejo leading the attack with 25 points and Marasigan, Villanueva and Intal backing him up with 12, 11 and 10 markers, respectively, as the reigning UAAP titlists stretched their win run to five with two more games left in the single round, carry-over quarters of the league presented by PLDT Home Ultera.

“We had a deeper bench and that helped us a lot,” said Ateneo coach Oliver Almadro.

National College of Business and Arts fought back from two sets down then outplayed La Salle in the decider to carve out a 25-27, 22-25, 25-22, 25-23, 15-9 victory over La Salle and send the race for the last two semis berths wide open.

The win tied the Wildcats with the Archers at third at 2-2 with the Generals just half-a-game behind at 2-3 and UP and St. Benilde at 1-3 in the league backed by Mikasa and organized by Sports Vision.

Paul Domingo and guest player Eden Canlas fired 19 and 16 points, respectively, while skipper Jason Canlas and another guest player Reyson Fuentes scored 15 markers each as the Wildcats turned what had been a losing stand into a winning attack and frustrated the Archers.

Team captain Raymark Woo topscored with 18 hits while John Onia and Ralph Calasin had 15 and 13 points, respectively, for La Salle, which turned back NCBA in the first two sets but failed to strike back in the next three.

ACIRC ATENEO BUT THE EAGLES COLLEGIATE CONFERENCE EDEN CANLAS EMILIO AGUINALDO COLLEGE GAMES AUG HOME ULTERA HOWARD MOJICA JASON CANLAS LA SALLE
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