Doromal Libero Roma Mae Doromal hopes to step up in today’s Ateneo-DLSU rivalry match. UAAP photo

Ateneo, La Salle renew rivalry in UAAP volleyball

March 1, 2024 Theodore P. Jurado 221 views

ATENEO hopes to finally solve the riddle of La Salle in their first rivalry match of the season today in the UAAP women’s volleyball tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena.

The Lady Spikers have been dominant against the Blue Eagles, having won their last 12 meetings dating back from May 2, 2017.

Riding on the momentum of last Wednesday’s 22-25, 20-25, 25-22, 25-17, 15-9 victory over University of the Philippines to finally crash into the win column after a 0-2 start, Ateneo’s Brazilian coach Sergio Veloso is looking forward for his troops to elevate their game several notches higher in the 2 p.m. contest.

“La Salle is a strong team,” said Veloso. “But no matter who play on the other side, we will try to do our best. All the time, I tell our players to try to do your best. Play 100-110 percent and if the other team play very well too, it’s good. It’s good for the fans. Good for everybody having a good match.”

Although the Blue Eagles remained at the lower half of the standings, Lyann de Guzman, who scored a career-high 24 points against the Fighting Maroons, knows that her team can compete against the defending champions.

“We all know na sobrang big talaga pag natapat ang Ateneo at La Salle. But yun nga, sabi ni coach na we just need to keep on playing and do our job inside the court and darating na yung points sa amin naturally or win the game,” said De Guzman.

Sobe Buena, who had an impressive 18-of-36 attacks the last time, stresses the need for the Blue Eagles to follow Veloso’s game plan to the letter against the Lady Spikers.

“It is so important na we stick to the system and that we are able to enjoy and trust each other inside the court kasi, I think in today’s game (against UP), that was really really important and I think if we do that against La Salle, we will able to play well against them,” said Buena.

Coming off a tough five-set loss, the Lady Spikers are expected to show up with a lot of fire on their eyes.

La Salle fell short in its comeback from a two-set hole, as it squandered a three-point lead in the fifth to bow to University of Santo Tomas, 18-25, 23-25, 25-14, 25-16, 12-15, last Sunday.

National University shoots for its third straight win as it takes on UP in the first match at 2 p.m.

The Lady Bulldogs and the Lady Spikers are locked in a three-way tie in second place with idle Far Eastern University.

“Yung patience lang ng progress namin, kailangan lang maging consistent sa pagtatrabaho namin sa training and hopefully, ma-apply namin sa next game,” said NU middle blocker Sheena Toring.

The Tigresses, who will play the Lady Tamaraws tomorrow, are the only undefeated team at 3-0.

In the men’s division, the four-peat seeking Bulldogs go up against the Fighting Maroons at 10 a.m., while the Blue Eagles and the Green Spikers face off in their own rivalry duel at 12 noon.