By Ricky Manliguis
SAN JUAN—National University was again challenged by UE. But in the end, they survived yet again.
Dropping another set against the Lady Warriors, the Lady Bulldogs avoided a late-game meltdown to carve out a 25-15, 25-21, 21-25, 25-21 squeaker in Sunday action of the UAAP LXXIX women’s volleyball tournament at the FilOil Flying V Arena.
With Jaja Santiago on ballistc mode yet again, the wards of Coach Roger Gorayeb recovered from a disastrous third and mid-fourth set to improve to a 6-4 win-loss record and shook off the painful straight-set loss opposite defending champions De La Salle University.
The 6-foot-5 Santiago fired 20 of her 23 points on the attacking, including back-to-back hits that sealed the outcome. She also had three of the team’s 12 blocks.
Jorelle Singh also stepped up for NU with 17 points, with Fil-Japanese hitter Risa Sato the third double-digit scorer with 10.Setter Jasmine Nabor had eight points and 27 excellent sets.
UE made a stubborn stand in the game, taking advantage of NU’s 37 errors while firing 13 service aces, four coming from Shaya Adorador. It had one final push in the fourth, trimming a 14-17 deficit to come close at 21-23 before losing steam in the end.
Adorador was at her elements again for UE, now losers of three straight for a 1-9 record, with 16 points spiked on 12 attacks. Judith Abil added 10 points in the loss.