Games Wednesday
(Mall of Asia Arena)
10 a.m. — NU vs UE (men)
12 noon — UST vs AdU (men)
2 p.m. — NU vs UE (women)
4 p.m. — UST vs AdU (women)

NATIONAL University (NU)and University of Santo Tomas (UST) shore up their drive for a Top-Two finish and the twice-to-beat incentives against separate counterparts as the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) women’s volleyball tournament returns from a 10-day break today at the Mall of Asia Arena.

The Lady Bulldogs, who dealt the Golden Tigresses their first defeat before the UAAP break in observance of the Holy Week, rides on the momentum versus the University of the East (UE) at 2 p.m. followed by the UST-Adamson University (AdU) duel at 4 p.m. 

NU is at 7-2, a stone throw’s away from UST (8-1) and reigning champion La Salle (7-1) in a wild finish for the coveted Top 2 spots laced by win-once bonuses in the Final Four nearing the homestretch of the two-round preliminaries. UE and Adamson, for their part, sport similar 2-6 slates entering a key tiff to stay in Final Four contention as Far Eastern University (4-4) and Ateneo de Manila University (3-6) pace the race for the last spot.

Former MVP Bella Belen said that NU is not keen on presssing the break even against the lowly UE squad led by super rookie Casiey Monique Dongallo.

The same goes for the ertswhile pristine Golden Tigresses, who are out to hold the fort at No. 1 despite absorbing their first loss that paved the way for traditional Final Four format instead of a potential stepladder one.

In the men’s play, second-running and three-time champion NU (7-2) takes on UE (1-7) at 10 a.m. while UST (5-4) and Adamson (4-4) battle in the big game between Final Four contendets at 12 noon. — John Bryan Ulanday