UAAP: Lady Spikers suffer straight defeats in the first series of seaside affairs

The DLSU Lady Spikers were unable to start on the right foot in their UAAP Season 86 Beach Volleyball campaign’s opening weekend from November 17 to 19 at the Sands SM by the Bay. The team from Taft struggled in their first fixtures, tallying zero wins and four losses to the NU Lady Bulldogs, UST Golden Tigresses, UE Lady Warriors, and FEU Lady Tamaraws.

Representing the Green and White are Jhay Ar Levina, Sophia Sindayen, and Jenya Torres. This season’s lineup features a completely different set of Lady Spikers carrying the La Salle name compared to UAAP Season 85. However, this fresh set of players is no stranger to the renowned Lady Spiker teamwork. As Sindayen said, “Yung teammates ko po, sobrang reliable sa loob ng court… ‘yun nga po parang may laban po talaga [kami]. Kulang lang po talaga [ngayon], pero kaya naman.” 

(My teammates are very reliable inside the court. They always put up a good fight. It’s a bit lacking now, but we can do it.)

In preparation for this season’s beach volleyball tournament, the team took the time to strengthen their skills for their upcoming matches and develop their emotional capabilities as athletes. Sindayen mentioned that their preparations involved conditioning themselves both physically and emotionally. The left-handed hitter expresses, “Syempre training, training namin dito sa [Mall of Asia Sands] and ‘pag wala po kaming training nagi-indoor kami. Syempre pine-prepare din namin ‘yung sarili namin sa puso kung paano lumaban.”

(Of course, training, be it at Mall of Asia Sands, and sometimes, we practice indoor volleyball. We also prepared ourselves to play boldly and full of heart)

Lacking defense

Sindayen opened the scoring of the match versus UST with a service ace. Both teams rallied in exchange of points early in the first set until they reached a deadlock at 7-all, which was then snapped by Gen Eslapor with an ace. The Lady Spikers struggled to act on their defense as the team from España went on a 4-0 run, forcing DLSU to call for a timeout. 

The Golden Tigresses’ momentum was carried onto the second set, leaving La Salle seven points behind. The team from Taft could not handle the multiple offenses unleashed by their opponent. Even though they managed to tally a few more points with a Sindayen off-the-block hit and two consecutive block points by Levina, unforced errors were big factors that led to getting trounced by the defending champions.

The Lady Spikers’ second match of the day suffered the same ending, with the UE Lady Warriors being pesky in targeting DLSU’s unguarded sports. Errors were a crucial factor in this match as well as the scoring continued with a gap, La Salle trailing UE. A substitution was then called coming into the second set, with Torres substituting for Levina. Torres immediately made her presence felt, scoring with an attack and a power tip to cut UE’s lead by three. After an attack error by UE, Sindayen served up three consecutive aces to put DLSU in the lead, 11-10. The game eventually reached a deadlock at 13-all, but with the Lady Spikers falling short in their defense, the Lady Warriors succeeded in pulling away and finishing the match at 21-15.

Rallying for a win

Game four of the beach volleyball tournament saw Torres start alongside Sindayen. Hoping to secure a win in the last game of the opening weekend, the Lady Spikers started the match strong with a service ace from Sindayen. The team from Taft secured an early lead with the pair chipping in attack points, 6-3. Much to no avail, the early lead dwindled as the FEU Lady Tamaraws took charge of the game with smart plays by Melody Pons and Gerzel Petallo, 6-all. FEU went on to seize control of the rest of the first set, creating a 5-0 run and successfully containing the score of the Lady Spikers to points from their errors. The first set ended at 11-21 with the Taft-based squad trailing behind by ten points.

The second set saw a familiar circumstance like the latter half of the first set. Despite DLSU’s efforts, they failed to minimize their errors, which rattled the team’s defense, allowing FEU to take advantage of, 9-5. Back-to-back points by Torres allowed an opening for the Lady Spikers to build momentum, but ultimately, the Lady Spikers bowed down to the FEU Lady Tamaraws.

Motivated for the next match

Sindayen, on her sentiments on how the results of the first few games have motivated them moving forward, shared, “Siguro since puro talo kami, ‘yung motivation namin is mas iangat pa yung laro namin. ‘Yung ipakita kung ano talaga yung kaya namin gawin sa loob ng court.”

(Since we experienced many losses, our motivation for the upcoming games is to increase our level of play and to show what we are capable of on the court.)

After failing to secure a win in their first four games this week, the DLSU Lady Spikers will return to the court in hopes of improving their record in their upcoming match against the AdU Lady Falcons and the ADMU Blue Eagles at Sands SM by the Bay this coming Friday, November 24, at 10:45 am and 5:45 pm respectively.

Ysa Bakabak

By Ysa Bakabak

Samantha Vidal

By Samantha Vidal

Leave a Reply