By Michael Angelo S. Murillo
THE Far Eastern University Lady Tamaraws chalked up their third victory in a row in women’s volleyball of the University Athletic Association of the Philippines Season 81, taking down the gutsy Adamson Lady Falcons in five sets, 25-18, 17-25, 25-14, 22-25 and 15-8, on Sunday at the FilOil Flying V Arena in San Juan City.
Faced a spirited fight from their opponents, the Lady Tamaraws survived being forced to a decider with a more steady form in the end to get the better of the Lady Falcons and improved to 4-2 for the season, good for joint third place as of this writing.
The Lady Tamaraws had it commanding to start the opening set, banking on steady serves and good middle play from Celine Domingo and Jeannette Villareal.
They would take a 16-11 lead by the second technical timeout before taking the set, 25-18, to seize early control of the contest.
In the second set it was Adamson’s turn to soar, edging FEU, 8-7, in the early goings of the frame and creating further separation, 16-10, midway.
FEU tried to rally back but the Lady Falcons would fend off their opponent for the 25-17 set victory and pull even with the Lady Tamaraws at a set each.
The Lady Tamaraws cranked up things at the start of the third set, led by rookie Lycha Ebon and Heather Guino-o.
They raced to a 16-8 lead by the second technical break before the Lady Falcons made some move to come back on the lead of veterans Joy Dacoron and Eli Soyud.
No full comeback from Adamson though would be completed as FEU galloped to the 25-14 set win and the 2-1 advantage for the match.
The two teams had it tight to start the fourth set, with the count at 8-7 in favor of the Lady Tamaraws by the first technical timeout.
Adamson, however, showed a lot of resilience after, overtaking FEU, 16-14, at the halfway point.
The Lady Falcons extended their lead to five points, 20-15, before the Lady Tamaraws made a 3-0 run to come within two points, 20-18.
Adamson stopped the bleeding with back-to-back points to make it a 22-18 advantage for the team.
FEU was not deterred by it as it made another spirited run to narrow the gap to one point, 23-22.
The Lady Falcons scored the next two points to secure the set win and forced the deciding fifth set.
With the outcome of the match very open, the two teams tried to come out sprinting to begin the fifth set.
It was Ebon and the Lady Tamaraws which gained early traction, racing to an 8-3 advantage at the exchange.
Dacoron, however, did not allow the Lady Falcons to fall far behind, racking up three straight points to pull her team to just two points away, 8-6.
That was the closest that they would get near though as FEU collectively held on to the victory after.
Guino-o led the Lady Tamaraws with a game-high 20 points with Ebon adding 17 and Domingo 14.
Libero Ria Meneses also stepped up for FEU, finishing with 44 excellent digs and nine excellent receptions to win player of the game honors.
For Adamson, which dropped to 1-4 for the season with the loss, it was Soyud who showed the way with 14 points with Dacoron finishing 13 and Bernadette Flora 11.
FEU next plays on March 16 against the De La Salle Lady Spikers while Adamson takes on the Ateneo Lady Eagles on March 13.
By Michael Angelo S. Murillo