The DLSU Green Shuttlers and Lady Shuttlers remained among their respective divisions’ top contenders in the UAAP Season 78 Badminton tournament after strong finishes last September 23, 25, 26, and 27 at the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex.
The Green Shuttlers remain undefeated in five matches, winning against the FEU Tamaraws and the Ateneo Blue Eagles with identical 4-1 match scores, while demolishing the UE Red Warriors with a five-game sweep.
The Lady Shuttlers, on the other hand, suffered their first defeat this season with a 3-2 loss to the UP Lady Maroons. However, they bounced back in the next two games to clinch a 3-2 victory against the UST Growling Tigresses and take a commanding 5-0 win versus the Adamson Lady Falcons.
The Green Shuttlers opened the second week of the tournament dominating their archrivals, the Ateneo Blue Eagles. The Taft-based squad gave up only one game and it was the last match of the day, with EJ Boac falling in three games, 21-13, 18-21, and 21-18.
The Green Shuttlers then took on the UE Red Warriors and swept all five games, finishing all of their matches in just two sets and in an average of 25 minutes per game. The biggest win for DLSU in that matchup was during the first doubles match of the day between Anton Cayanan and Gerald Sibayan from DLSU and Clarence Camacho and King Arthur Espiritu of the Red Warriors. Sibayan showed his mastery in the doubles division early on, scoring 15 points in the first game alone as La Salle took the first match with a score of 21-12. Cayanan would not be outdone with 14 points of his own in the second game as they dispatched UE’s Camacho-Espiritu in the second game, 21-8.
The Green Shuttlers rounded off the week with another big win, this time against the FEU Tamaraws, whom they finished off with a match score of 4-1. The only loss incurred by the Season 77 runner-up was in the match between Boac and Jashua Maquelabit of FEU. Boac led for most of the match but Maquelabit hustled back to tie the game at 20 apiece. The match would need extra points until Maquelabit scored two straight points to come up with the win in the first game, 24-22. Maquelabit then dominated the next game at 21-9 to snatch the win from DLSU.
Ups and downs
The DLSU Lady Shuttlers started the week with their first loss of the season at the hands of the UP Lady Maroons. The Lady Maroons took the first three matches, effectively winning the matchup against DLSU. With their pride on the line, however, the Lady Shuttlers rallied back to win the last two matches of the day. Down by two games coming into the first doubles match of the day, DLSU had a chance to salvage the matchup but UP’s duo of Francisco-Inlayo slipped past DLSU team captain Kristelle Salatan and teammate Alyssa Leonardo in two sets, 22-20 and 21-19, respectively.
La Salle then avenged their first defeat, clinching a 3-2 victory against the UST Tigresses. DLSU and UST went back and forth, with the Tigresses winning the first and third matches, while DLSU took the second and fourth matches. With the series tied at two apiece, Lady Shuttler Nicole Albo posted her best win so far this season, defeating Airish Macalino to give the victory to La Salle. Albo survived a close first game with a score of 21-19. The rookie then came through once again in the second set and won the match in convincing fashion with a final score of 21-7.
The Lady Shuttlers ended week two on a high note with a five-match blowout against the Adamson Lady Falcons. Anghela Sevilla posted La Salle’s biggest win of the day when she faced Lady Falcon Mikaela Aquino in the second singles match. Sevilla ended the first game quickly with a 21-12 final score. She never looked back from that point on as she sealed the victory for La Salle with her dominant second game performance, 21-8.