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Golden Tigresses falter against DLSU in UAAP debut

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Photo by Genelaine Urbano/TomasinoWeb

The University of Santo Tomas Golden Tigresses ran out of gas against the defending champions De La Salle University Lady Spikers, 20-25, 25-17, 22-25, 25-15, 8-15, in the UAAP Season 80 women’s volleyball tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena Saturday.

In the fifth set, rookie Milena Alessandrini committed back-to-back attack errors and two straight aces by Michelle Cobb put UST in a hole, 5-0. The Golden Tigresses closed the lead within a point, 5-6, but DLSU’s captain Majoy Baron sparked a 4-nothing run that saw the defending champions’ lead balooned, 10-5.

Sisi Rondina put the Tigresses behind her back to slash the lead to two, 8-10, but a series of errors gave La Salle the win, 15-8.

“Gusto naman talaga namin manalo but bilog ang bola,” UST head coach Emilio ‘Kung Fu’ Reyes said. “Kung sino yung kumurap every set, yun yung madadali.”

The España-based squad tied the game at 21-apiece in the third set, but reigning MVP Baron and Kim Dy brings La Salle to a crucial 2-1 lead, 25-22.

Rondina led UST’s attack in the fourth set, leading as much as 12 points, 20-8, comfortably taking the set to extend the match into a fifth and final set, 25-15.

Rondina led UST’s offense with 28 points while Alessandrini added 18 points. Baron contributed 19 points while Desiree Cheng and Tin Tiamzon combined for 21 points.

The Golden Tigresses will try to get their first win against the University of the East Lady Warriors on Wednesday, Feb. 7, at the FilOil Flying V Arena in San Juan.

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Tigresses pick apart NU in four sets

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Photo by Genelaine Urbano

The University of Santo Tomas Golden Tigresses pulled a shocker against the NU Lady Bulldogs, 22-25, 25-22, 25-21, 25-9, to keep their Final Four bid alive in the UAAP Season 80 women’s volleyball tournament at the Smart Araneta Coliseum Sunday.

Tied at 5-all in the fourth set, the España-based squad took advantage of NU’s defensive woes, unleashing a whooping 20-4 surge to easily close the game with a lopsided victory, 25-9.

UST’s net defense overwhelmed the Lady Bulldogs as the Tigresses tallied 12 total blocks compared to NU’s five.

UST Head Coach Emilio “Kung Fu” Reyes highlighted his players’ major improvements on the game, but he stated that the process doesn’t stop with their latest win.

“This time medyo nagiging maganda ang resulta ng mga pinaghihirapan namin, at halos lahat ng mali naicocorrect na namin,” he said. “Pero hindi naman kami tumitigil doon siyempre.”

“Every game, nag-concentrate kami at pinagbubuti ng bawat players yung mga ginagawa nila, especially sa mga roles nila,” Reyes continued.

UST had the comfortable edge in the first set after capitalizing on NU’s eight errors, 22-19.

However, NU took advantage of UST’s collapse down the stretch, rallying a 6-0 run to reach the set point, 22-25.

Cherry Rondina led the Tigresses with 25 points while Milenna Alessandrini registered 19 markers.

NU’s Jaja Santiago scored game-high 27 points in a losing effort.

UST’s second straight victory now earns them a 4-7 win-loss slate, while NU’s second-round woes continue after suffering their fourth straight loss.

“Nakuha naman namin ang respeto sa mga sarili namin especially doon sa mga bata na ‘to, kasi sila talaga yung nakataya diyan,” Reyes explained.

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The Tigresses will try to continue their momentum against the Ateneo Lady Eagles on Apr. 4, Sunday, at the same venue.

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Golden Tigresses halt losing streak, clobber Lady Maroons

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Photo by Audrey Janelle Fontilla/TomasinoWeb

The University of Santo Tomas Golden Tigresses ended their five-game losing skid versus the University of the Philippines Lady Maroons, 19-25, 30-28, 25-20, 25-16, in the UAAP Season 80 women’s volleyball tournament at the Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan Saturday.

Down by two points in the latter part of the second frame, 21-23, UST climbed back to lead, 24-23, to inch closer into winning the set.

The two teams battled back and forth until UST finally won, 30-28, to even the score at one set apiece.

It was a defensive play by UST with blocks from Milena Alessandrini that gave them the lead early in the third set, 4-1.

The Tigresses lead by eight points, 15-7, midway through the set before UP exploded with seven straight points to close the gap, 15-14, but UST flipped the switch to finish the set strong, 25-20.

The España-based squad leaned on their balance effort in the fourth set and sealed the match, 25-16.

“Individually and as a group malaking bagay yung panalo na ‘to, masyado na kaming nabugbog eh. Ang importante is hindi talaga kami susuko,” UST head coach Kung Fu Reyes stated.

Coach Kung Fu highlighted the play of his reserve player, Mia Dizon, for her stellar play inside the court.

“Siya [Dizon] yung nagbigay ng additional reinforcement sa amin, di man siya umaatake nang ganon kalakas, di naman siya nagtatapon at malaking tulong siya sa depensa,” Reyes mentioned.

Star player Cherry Ann Rondina said that she huddled the team before the match to talk about what needs to be done to gain a win and halt their losing skid.

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“Sabi ko sa kanila huwag niyong pasikatin ‘yung Sisi [Rondina] lang. Gusto ko ‘yung pangalan ng school natin and walang isang tao [lang] na magtratrabaho,” Rondina uttered.

The Tigresses’ next game will be against the National University Lady Bulldogs on Sunday, Mar. 25, at the same venue.

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UST Galvanize rules Street Dance Competition; Prime fails to reach podium

Senior high’s street dance team Galvanize bagged their first UAAP tournament championship.

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Photo by Audrey Janelle Fontilla/TomasinoWeb

The University of Santo Tomas took split wins as Galvanize brought home the championship in the Juniors division of the UAAP Season 80 Street Dance Competition at the Mall of Asia Arena Sunday, while Prime fell short in the Seniors division landing in fourth place.

Galvanize finished with a score of 82.30 points while the FEU Baby Tamaraws Dance Company and the UE Street Warriors settled for second and third place with 71.50 and 71.10 points, respectively.

“Everything is possible with God,” UST head coach Chips Beltran stated.

In the Seniors division, the Zoo-themed Prime landed in fourth place with 75.40 points behind third-placer UP Street Dance Club with 78.60 points.

The FEU Street Alliance claimed the championship with their mafia-inspired performance amassing a total of 85.75 points while De La Salle Street Company, last year’s champion, gave up the title and landed second with 79.50 points.

“Para sa akin isa ‘yun sa mga gusto kong runs nila [Prime], one of their best runs and satisfied ko after nila magperform,” Assistant Coach Meeko Evangelista said. “Basically ginawa lang namin kung ano kami, kung saan kami sanay and ano yung ginagawa namin talaga.”

This year was the first time that the competition included high school teams from different universities.

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