UAAP: Lady Spikers face ADMU in finals rematch, aim for solo lead

The stakes cannot be higher as the Taft-Katipunan rivalry will once again take place with the DLSU Lady Spikers closing the first round of the season against the ADMU Lady Eagles. With both teams tied at first place, with a 5-1 win-loss record apiece, the winner will ensure the top spot going into the second round of the UAAP Season 79 Volleyball Tournament.

Both teams will be entering the match coming off emphatic straight-set wins last Sunday, March 26. The Lady Eagles defeated the formidable UP Lady Maroons, 25-14, 25-19, 25-21, while the Lady Spikers routed the UE Lady Warriors, 25-18, 25-14, 25-16.

The Lady Eagles will be playing with a chip on their shoulder as they look to avenge themselves after their loss to DLSU last season in the finals.

Eternal rivalry

The classic rivalry of La Salle and ADMU never fails to give the crowd a nail-biting experience. Last season’s matchups featured back and forth wins between the two teams. With the return back then of Ara Galang to their cohesive lineup, the Lasallians were avid to avenge their defeat to ADMU in the 2015 Finals.


Both teams traded blows during the elimination round of last season. The Lady Spikers severed their ties from the curse of losing to ADMU for the past two years after dismantling the Lady Eagles in straight sets, 25-22, 25-14, 25-18, to attain the long-sought victory in the first round. The second round, however, had a contrasting result. The Blue-and White quickly earned revenge from its heartbreaking loss in the previous round. La Salle failed to oust ADMU after losing a well-fought match composed of five sets, 21-25, 25-22, 25-16, 21-25, 15-5.

The rivalry eventually took to the stage of the Season 78 Finals. The Green-and-White wasted no time in securing a 1-0 lead in the best-of-three finals. The Lady Spikers defeated ADMU by a close margin in three sets, 25-22, 25-22, 25-21, with hopes of ending the season with a strong finish.

However, the Ateneans did not allow an easy breakaway for the team from Taft as they answered back in Game 2. The Blue Eagles trounced La Salle in five sets, 18-25, 26-28, 25-17, 25-16, 15-11, and made a statement to force a rubber match.

After a long season , the Lady Spikers came out triumphant against ADMU. They broke their plagued spell of runner-up finishes for the two previous seasons. Despite losing the first set, La Salle remained composed and routed the Lady Eagles in the suceeding sets, 19-25, 25-21, 25-16, 25-16, to take the title back to Taft.

Match-up analysis

Saturday’s match-up will feature ADMU’s offense versus DLSU’s defense. Throughout six games, La Salle has proven to be the league’s best net defense, recording 49 kill blocks and averaging 2.6 blocks per set behind Aduke Ogunsanya and Majoy Baron.

In addition, La Salle has extended its defense from the net to the floor. The team has continuously been anchored by Dawn Macandili. The Lady Spikers have been the most efficient on floor reception with an efficiency rate of 38.9 percent after garnering 151 excellent receptions while only committing 24 faults.

In the first round, ADMU, behind Bea De Leon and Michelle Morente, has showcased its prowess offensively, recording 243 kills with a league-best 39 percent success rate. The Lady Eagles also best DLSU with regards to service as the Lady Eagles have recorded 10 more service aces, 57-47, and fewer faults, 62-57, in that category as compared to the Lady Spikers.

La Salle’s offense, however, cannot be taken lightly with last year’s Finals MVP on the court. Kim Dy and Morente are tied for the sixth best scorer in the league, with the former scoring 72 total points in the season on 55 spikes, nine blocks, and eight aces.

The winner on Saturday, according to Lady Spikers’ Head Coach Ramil De Jesus, will be determined by who can produce the better play. “Magtatalo lang siguro ito sa kada service [at] receive, sino yung maka-pasa, sino yung may play. Kung hindi ka maka-pasa, wala kang play,” De Jesus implies. (It will depend on every service and receive, on which team can pass and make plays. If you can’t pass, you don’t have a play.)

The match-up also features a face-off of the tournament’s best setters. Although the Lady Spikers have dominated the league in sets as a team, Lady Eagle Jia Morado has been the UAAP’s best setter so far. Morado has accumulated an average of 12.1, slightly better than DLSU’s setter, Kim Fajardo, who averages 11.9 excellent sets per set.

Ultimately, the Lady Spikers will aim to keep their pace with the Lady Eagles and in the process, limit their lapses. Early in the season, De Jesus has emphasized how his team’s errors have been crucial for them. “Nasa stage pa rin kami ng adjustment so may nakikita pa ako na mga unforced error, like sa service, so medyo kulang,” he explains. (We’re still in the adjustment stages, so I still see a few unforced errors, for example, in service, so it’s still lacking.)

The highly anticipated showdown between DLSU and ADMU will take place tomorrow, March 25, at 4 pm in the Mall of Asia Arena.

Patrick Quintero

By Patrick Quintero

Renzo Miguel Mercado

By Renzo Miguel Mercado

One reply on “UAAP: Lady Spikers face ADMU in finals rematch, aim for solo lead”

Leave a Reply