Bulldogs book 9th straight UAAP men’s volleyball finals appearance

Ralph Edwin Villanueva - Philstar.com
Bulldogs book 9th straight UAAP men�s volleyball finals appearance
NU's Buds Buddin
UAAP Media Bureau

MANILA, Philippines -- The National University Bulldogs are barging into their ninth straight UAAP men’s volleyball finals after mauling the La Salle Green Spikers in four sets, 25-23, 22-25, 25-22, 25-21, Wednesday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

NU will be waiting for their finals opponent -- the winner of the clash between the University of Santo Tomas Golden Spikers and the Far Eastern University Tamaraws.

Buds Buddin paced the Bulldogs with 23 points off 19 attacks, two blocks and two service aces. Owa Retamar added five points, all blocks, and 21 excellent sets.

With the fourth set tied at 14 following an off-the-block attack by Noel Kampton, the four peat-seeking NU slowly pulled away thanks to the stellar play of Buddin, as well as errors by the Green Spikers.

A point by Nath del Pilar cut the lead to two, 17-19.

Buddin, then, traded points with Kampton and JM Ronquillo as La Salle kept in step, 19-21.

The Green Spikers, however, would commit unforced errors from Eugene Gloria and Ronquillo.

The latter would make up for it with a booming kill, 20-23, but Buddin blasted the ball to push the Bulldogs to the match point.

After Buddin dialed in an error that went out, rookie Jade Disquitado ended the match with a tip.

“Well, ngayong season talagang hindi naging madali, pero credit sa mga players and coaching staff and the management, talagang naka-suporta sa amin all throughout the season,” NU head coach Dante Alinsunurin told reporters.

“Kaya [sabi ko sa team], kailangan na kung anong gusto natin ma-achieve, ma-achieve natin. Nagpapasalamat kami na nakatuntong na kami sa finals,” he added.

Nico Almendras backstopped with 14 markers for NU, while Leo Aringo produced 11.

Ronquillo finished with 27 points, while Vince Maglinao added 17 for La Salle.

Eco Adajar had two points and 25 excellent sets.

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