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‘Baste’, CSB spikers seek semis

  • Written by Theodore P. Jurado
  • Published in Volleyball
  • Read: 170
LYCEUM of the Philippines University’s Czarina Orros and Christine Miralles put up a defensive stance on Emilio Aguinaldo College’s Aira Binondo in last week’s NCAA women’s volleyball game. The Lady Pirates won this one. LYCEUM of the Philippines University’s Czarina Orros and Christine Miralles put up a defensive stance on Emilio Aguinaldo College’s Aira Binondo in last week’s NCAA women’s volleyball game. The Lady Pirates won this one.

UNBEATEN San Sebastian and defending champion College of Saint Benilde go for the first two Final Four berths when they play separate foes in the NCAA women’s volleyball tournament today at the Filoil Flying V Centre.

The Lady Stags take on University of Perpetual Help System Dalta at 12:30 p.m., while the Lady Blazers clash with Arellano University at 11 a.m. in a pair of interesting matches.

San Sebastian is the only undefeated team in the season with a 6-0 card, while St. Benilde is not far behind at 6-1 in second place, with both of them already assured of a playoff for the last semifinal  berth.

The magic number to make it in the Final Four is seven wins, something the Lady Stags and the Lady Blazers hope to achieve today.

Still holding a perfect record in the eliminations, San Sebastian is not only eyeing  a place in the Top 4 but also gaining an outright passage in the Finals which the Recto-based spikers did last year, but squandered a thrice-to-beat incentive when it lost to St. Benilde in four games.
   
The Lady Stags are looking for reigning two-time MVP Gretchel Soltones to get her focus on the game if she wants to finish her collegiate career as a winner.
   
Soltones has yet to win a championship in her four seasons for San Sebastian.
   
Also in a mission are the Lady Blazers, whose players recently cut their hair short as a show of unity in their bid to retain the throne.
   
Last season’s Finals MVP Jeanette Panaga continues to display tremendous leadership for St. Benilde, while also drawing the needed help from Ranya Musa, Rachel Astrero and Arianne Daguil.
   
After dropping their season opener to the Lady Stags, the Lady Chiefs, the Season 90 champions, won five straight to gain a share of third place.  
   
Despite losing CJ Rosario, Arellano remains solid behind the consistent plays of Jovie Prado, Ria Sante and Anne Esguerra along with libero Jan Eunice Galang.
   
Having the busiest schedule among the Final Four contenders, the 3-2 Lady Altas have four remaining elimination round games in the next three weeks.  A sweep of its remaining matches will give Perpetual Help a Final Four berth.
   
Lourdes Clemente, Coleen Bravo, Jam Suyat and Marijo Medalla will be the vital cogs for the Lady Altas.
   
In men’s play, titleholder Perpetual Help (4-1) plays San Sebastian (3-3) at 2 p.m., while St. Benilde (6-1) and Arellano (5-1) collide at 9:30 a.m.