By Ricky Manliguis
SAN JUAN—UP was tested this time.
Pitted against a UE squad in high spirits, the Lady Maroons had scary moments before overpowering the Lady Warriors, 25-16, 26-24, 25-19, in the first game of Saturday’s UAAP LXXIX women’s volleyball tournament at the FilOil-Flying V Centre.
Diana Carlos, Marian Buitre, and Nichole Tiamzon provided the firepower for the Katipunan-based ladies to notch its second straight win and tie idle National U atop the team standings.
After a blistering first frame, UP found themselves in a 20-23 hole in the second set. But after Judith Abil’s service error, Carlos fired four hits before Buitre foiled UE skipper Shaya Adorador’s offensive to end the frame.
It also battled back in the third stanza, turning a 0-4 deficit to a 7-6 edge. The Lady Warriors countered, but it was all UP the rest of the way.
Carlos led the charge as the sophomore pulled off 18 points, 15 coming from attacks, plus three blocks. Buitre had 14 while Tiamzon chipped in 10.
The Lady Maroons dominated 42-18 in the attacking department. UE, however, led the block party with 11 rejections.
Adorador and Mae Anne Mendrez both scored eight points for UE, which fell to 0-2 to accompany Adamson University in the cellar. Abil and Seth Rodriguez had seven apiece.
State U will next face defending champions De La Salle, while UE will tackle the UST Tigresses on Wednesday, Feb 15, still in San Juan.