UST gets timely boost from role player Gula in hard-fought win vs UE

Luisa Morales - Philstar.com
UST gets timely boost from role player Gula in hard-fought win vs UE
UST's Xyza Gula (10)
UAAP Media Bureau

MANILA, Philippines – The UST Golden Tigresses needed to dig deep to overcome a grittier, upset-seeking UE Lady Warriors squad in just their second game of UAAP Season 86 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Wednesday.

After giving up the early set lead to a Casiey Dongallo-led UE squad, UST head coach Kung Fu Reyes turned to “magic bunot” Xyza Gula in the three succeeding sets, helping the Tigresses take an 18-25, 25-19, 25-17, 25-22 victory. 

The second stringer finished with 10 big points in a gritty win versus a revamped UE squad – which was also coming off of a win over Ateneo in its season opener.

When the dust settled, Gula said that she was eager to show what she could do and hopefully get more playing time in the stacked España squad.

“Siguro, binigay ko lang best ko since second stringer ako. Binigay ko lang kung ano yung laro ko tapos maka-ambag sa team. Yung chance na makalaro na ako, naipakita ko yung kaya ko,” she said.

Gula was subbed midway through the second and third sets, before earning the start in the fourth canto where the Tigresses closed out the Lady Warriors.

Despite missing out on any form of action in their Set 1 loss, Gula was aware of everything that needed to be adjusted to take the win.

“Nakita ko kasi nung first set parang nawala yung gigil at saka yung aggressiveness nila,” lamented Gula.

“So nung chance ko na na madala yung team sa aggressiveness at saka maenjoy yung team, siguro duon ko po nadala yung team na maglaro talaga yung laro namin,” she continued.

Gula hopes to be another source of offense over the weekend when the UST Golden Tigresses face their toughest challenge of the year so far.

UST collides with defending champions DLSU Lady Spikers in the main game on Sunday, February 25, at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City at 3 p.m.
Both teams sport a 2-0 record heading into Sunday's clash.

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