Facing their former head coach’s team, the National University Lady Bulldogs stumbled but quickly recovered to down the San Sebastian College-Recoletos Lady Stags, 25-21, 21-25, 25-11, 25-18, in Group A of the Premier Volleyball League Collegiate Coference at the FilOil Flying V Centre.
Boasting a clear height advantage, the Lady Bulldogs struggled to get their bearings early in the match. Holding a 23-18 lead in the first set, NU surrendered three of the next four points and needed a timeout before Joyce Sta. Rita served out to end the set.
The second frame saw a lineup adjustment that backfired on NU, with Rose Doria shifting to opposite spiker. The Lady Stags took advantage of NU’s defense and sprinted to an early 6-1 lead that decided the set.
The third and fourth frame, however, slanted heavily in NU’s favor, as San Sebastian’s offense stalled out.
“Siyempre, I always appreciate a win. It was a win, maganda ang result, but the way we did it, medyo hindi pa kami happy doon talaga. It goes to show na ‘yung aming system needs more working on,” said NU’s new head coach Babes Castillo, who has taken over for the Lady Stags’ Roger Gorayeb.
Gorayeb missed the game due to an emergency.
Aiko Urdas led the Lady Bulldogs with 17 points, while Jaja Santiago added 11 markers. NU’s rookie Princess Robles suffered a sprained ankle late in the third set. She went out of the game with seven points.
The Lady Bulldogs face fellow undefeated squad Far Eastern University Lady Tams (2-0) on Saturday.
Skipper Joyce Sta. Rita managed 12 markers for the Lady Stags, who skidded to their second loss in three games.
NU (3) – Urdas 17, Santiago 11, Paran 8, Robles 7, Sato 6, Nabor 4, Doromal 3, Singh 3, Doria 2, Valdez (L)
SSC-R (1) – Sta. Rita 12, Dalisay 9, Santos 7, Encarnacion 3, Guillema 3, Santos 2, Delos Reyes 1, Perez 1, Dela Torre 0, Eroa (L)