Home Editors' Picks Altas outlast Red Spikers to win NCAA S98 men’s volleyball title

Altas outlast Red Spikers to win NCAA S98 men’s volleyball title

The Game Three triumph completes the three-peat win

UNIVERSITY of Perpetual Help (UPHSD) found a way to put a stubborn San Beda University away for good with a nerve-wracking 25-21, 25-20, 22-25, 25-22 victory in their no-tomorrow NCAA Season 98 men’s volleyball finals showdown on Sunday and claimed its rightful place as one of the league’s greatest teams of all time.

That Game Three triumph sealed the Altas a 2-1 series win, a three-peat feat and a 13th overall that sealed their place in the league’s pantheon as the most titled team alongside the Letran Knights.

Never mind that it wasn’t a sweep that was denied of them by the upset-conscious Red Spikers following a Game Two 17-25, 25-27, 25-22, 25-23, 15-11 meltdown Friday.

As long as the Las Piñas-based spikers got to their intended destination, it wouldn’t matter with UPHSD coach Sammy Acaylar.

“We just want to win the championship,” said the veteran multi-titled Mr. Acaylar, one of the greatest, if not the greatest, coaches the league has produced.

Louie Ramirez showed why he’s the reigning MVP as he unleashed a 26-point masterpiece including a devastating down-the-line kill that sealed UPHSD’s place in league history.

That unforgettable effort also sealed him another hardware to his growing trophy collection — a Finals MVP plum.

The Altas could have finished off San Beda coach Ariel dela Cruz’s merry bunch from Mendiola in Game Two when it blitzed their way to a two-set lead only to see Mr. Ramirez fall into cramps that allowed the latter to pull off one of the most dramatic comebacks in finals history.

Mr. Ramirez got back with a vengeance on this one as Mr. Acaylar managed his talented ward’s touches and paved the way for the former to finish strong.

It was a heartbreaking finish for San Beda, which was eyeing a breakthrough crown.

The Red Spikers had their chances though as they appeared like replicating its Game Two come-from-behind win when they seized the third set and gave it all to snatch the fourth.

But in the end though, Mr. Ramirez and the mighty Altas were just too much for the Red Spikers. — Joey Villar