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Green and Lady Paddlers ascend in UAAP standings

The Taft-based paddlers just get better and better.

At the conclusion of the Table Tennis tournament of the 73rd Season of the UAAP, both the DLSU Green and Lady Paddlers proved they have what it takes to warrant a well deserved recognition for their teams’ efforts as both of the teams annexed the second place in their respective divisions.

The matches consisted of a double round-robin format similar to the system used in Basketball and Volleyball. After these matches, the rankings of the teams are assessed through their win-loss records.

The second round of matches was held, Oct. 2 and 3 at the Blue Eagle Gym. Even in the supposed lair of their archrivals, the talents of these Green-and-White paddlers could not be denied.

Throughout the four-day tournament, it was a close fight between the three schools: DLSU, Far Eastern University (FEU) and the University Santo Thomas (UST).

The Lady Paddlers fought their hardest and climbed up the standings and clambered to the second spot compared with last year’s third place. It was a close game against the defending champions Lady Tamaraws who were able to complete a 3-0 sweep in the end and achieve a rare four-peat championship.

In the first singles game, Kimberly Medina stood her ground and created a two-set gap against back-to-back MVP Beverly Villar, 11-7, 11-9. Villar, however, bounced back and won the rest of the sets, 6-11, 9-11, 9-11 and gave FEU a 1-0 advantage.

The last doubles game was between the DLSU tandem of Eunice Lustestica and Jellie Ann Yanela against FEU’s Krech Lamayan and El-Jane Beres. FEU won the first and second sets, 11-4, 11-3, respectively.

Lustestica and Yanela eventually held on and won the third and fourth sets with an 11-6 and 11-8 tie-up. The Morayta-based Paddlers, however, ensured their four-peat celebration with an 11-5 victory in the decisive set.

Two is indeed the magic number for the Paddlers of DLSU as they duplicated the feat achieved by the distaff squad.

The Paddlers, led by holdovers Ted Bryan Yu, Alvic Chua, Earvin De Pedro, and Darryl Rodel as well as a crop of talented rookies, compiled an astounding 9-3 win-loss record, which is good enough for second place. They swept the winless Ateneo paddlers and survived challenges from University of the Philippines, University of the East, National University and defending champion FEU before bowing against the Gold-and-White Squad.

The Paddlers placed behind eventual champion UST, which swept the tournament on their way to snatching the crown from FEU, which placed third after lording it over the table courts last season.

The last laugh, however, belonged to the Green Paddlers, as they scaled three rungs of the standings; they placed only fifth last year.

Both of the DLSU squads may have ended up as bridesmaids, but there is definitely improvement as testified by their final rankings.

“What contributed to the teams’ higher place in the standings were the improvement of the players’ dedication, discipline and determination”, said Green and Lady Paddlers Coach Lauro Crisostomo.

By The LaSallian

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