Lady Eagles, Lady Tams clash in KO duel

Kristina Villanueva - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — Top seed Ateneo looks to recover lost ground while Far Eastern U aims to get the job done as they collide in their do-or-die battle for the last finals seat in the UAAP Season 81 women’s volleyball at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan today.

The Lady Eagles were only a win away from the titular round as they marched into their Final Four clash Saturday armed with a twice-to-beat edge.

But they crumbled against the unrelenting fourth seed Lady Tamaraws, who pulled off a 10-25, 25-23, 25-22, 12-25, 15-8 stunner Saturday to force the winner-take-all.

The sudden death is set at 3:30 p.m., with last year’s runner-up FEU looking to finish what it has started to return to the championship stage.

“That is our chance so we won’t waste it. That is the opportunity for us to reach what we want to achieve – make it to the finals. As I’ve told the players, no matter what, even if our opponent has a twice-to-beat advantage, what’s important is to execute the game plan,” said Lady Tams coach George Pascua.

And that plan includes improving their service reception after allowing the Lady Eagles to land 17 aces Saturday.

“That was our struggle. We will work doubly hard on that,” said Pascua.

But the top blocking Lady Eagles are expected to do more damage at the net to shut down the Lady Tamaraws’ attackers.

ADMU had less blocks than FEU, 8-10, last game.

Maddie Madayag, Kat Tolentino, Bea de Leon and Ponggay Gaston carry the fight for the Lady Eagles against Heather Guino-o, Jeanette Villareal, Jerrili Malabanan and libero Buding Duremdes, who efficiently guarded the floor for FEU with her 44-for-57 excellent digs the last time.            

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