The DLSU Green Batters have qualified for finals of the UAAP Baseball tournament for the second year in a row.
DLSU has once again finished the regular season with a win-loss record of 8-2, with both losses coming during the first round. La Salle then swept the second round and came out number one in the rankings at the end of the eliminations.
Joining them once again for this year’s finals are last year’s champions, the ADMU Blue Eagles. This year will be a rematch of last year’s championship series wherein ADMU swept DLSU in the best-of-three series.
Last season saw the Green Batters sweep their Blue-and-White counterparts in the eliminations while this year, Ateneo took the first round match-up before La Salle won in the second round.
From zero to 60
The first clash between the Green Batters and the Blue Eagles for this season took place last February 8, which concluded with another victory for the Katipunan-based squad.
Initially, La Salle had the upper hand as they scored the game’s first run in the third inning, but Ateneo suddenly made a comeback come the sixth inning, bombarding the Green-and-White squad with a series of runs.
The Green Batters were unable to rally and take the lead back, losing to the Blue Eagles, 4-1. The turnout of their first face-off, however, did not worry DLSU coach Joseph Orillana as he knew that his players, especially the rookies, were still in the stages of adjustment to the playing standards of UAAP baseball and the first round will serve as the time for them to gain experience for the latter half of the season.
True to their coach’s words, La Salle performed better in the second round. From a low-scoring affair in the first round, both teams turned up the offense in the second, with the slugfest ending in DLSU’s favor, 14-12, last February 26.
The second round match started out with hot bats as DLSU scored seven runs in the first inning. Errors from the Green Batters caused three Ateneo runs, however. The score-fest continued and by the end of the fifth inning, the score was up to 13-9, with DLSU still leading. A run was scored by both sides in the eighth to make it 14-10.
Trouble then stirred for the Green-and-White as the ninth inning saw two additional runs by Ateneo to put the game within two runs. A fly ball out, however, ended the game and sealed the win for the Green Batters.
The first finals match between these two squads will take place this Thursday, March 5, at 11 am in the Rizal Memorial Baseball Diamond. The second and third matches, on the other hand, will be on March 12 and 15, respectively.