UP was on fire! The UP Lady Fighting Maroons served the undefeated Adamson Lady Falcons its first loss in the Premier Volleyball League. And UP’s four-set win came no less than in the Game 1 of the PVL semifinals.
Their afternoon tilt at the Filoil Flying V Arena was nothing short of exciting as both teams aimed to get the lead in the best-of-three series.
UP started slow with Isa Molde missing the mark in several of her spike attempts. UP stayed behind for most of the set and were down by as much as 5 points, 19-14.
However, impressive performances from Marian Buitre and Marist Layug kept the team alive late in the set. Rosie Rosier’s strong start and consistent service helped bring UP back to within striking distance, but it was not enough to secure set 1. ADU took the set, 26-24.
UP wrote a different as they found their rhythm in the second. While Adamson kept an eye out for the Lady Fighting Maroons’ top scorer, Molde, the rest of the team stepped up to tie the match at one set all.
Layug and Rosier continued their great play, keeping the team ahead of the Falcons who swept the elimination round.
The Lady Falcons tried to crawl back, posting a small run for themselves, but a smash and a block from Buitre secured the set for UP, 19-25.
The next set was unpredictable as both teams went back-and-forth with the scoring. However, midway through the third, the Diliman-based squad started to dominate its opponents again.
UP led by as much as 6 points in the set, behind Ayi Gannaban’s outburst. Molde’s spikes also started to get through Adamson’s defense. ADU came close but was not able to overcome the strong showing of the Maroons, ending the set 22-25.
ADU took an early lead in the fourth and quickly pummeled the Maroons, leading by as much as 6 points, 18-12.
Not letting up, rookie Marianne Sotomil’s excellent service helped establish a 6-0 run for UP to tie at 18-all. UP continued the streak and ultimately bagged set 4 and Game 1 of the semis.
UP had four players with double-digit scores. Buitre led the UPWVT with 25 big points and 23 attacks. Layug also had a breakout performance with 14 points. Rosier produced 11 points, while Gannaban added 10. Molde poured 9 points.
Rookies Mirgie Bautista and Rem Altomea proved to be strong support as Liberos, leading the team in sets and digs respectively. Sotomil also had an imposing performance throughout the four-set match.
This is Adamson’s first loss in the Premier Volleyball League Collegiate Cup 2018, while UP will only need one more win to enter the PVL Finals.
Game 2 of the UP Lady Fighting Maroons vs Adamson Lady Falcons will be on Saturday (Sept. 1), 4pm at the Filoil Flying V Arena.
UP: 24, 25, 25, 25
Adamson: 26, 19, 22, 20