With a new breed of Stallions in the United Collegiate Championship League (UCCL), De La Salle Lipa (DLSL) men’s volleyball team swept Manuel S. Enverga University Foundation (MSEUF) to debut in the league with three straight hard-earned sets, 25-20, 28-26, 25-23, at First Asia Institute of Technology and Humanities (FAITH) Gymnasium, Tanauan City, Aug 18.
Early in the match, DLSL’s team captain Sean Hernandez already hammered down three attacks to crush Enverga University’s (EU) defense, giving his team an early advantage.
The green-shirted men held onto their lead with the help of Wildcat’s unforced errors. The Stallion’s two man wall, Angelo Perea and Angelo Enginco, shut down the EU’s line of offense and snatched the first set, 25-20.
After winning the first set, the Stallions’ main setter Allan Mayuga mercilessly fired three consecutive aces to kick off the second set.
However, the Wildcats’ team captain and main setter, Meir Aquino showed his quick-witted distribution of their ball to confuse the Stallion’s defense and put them into a three point deficit.
It was a neck and neck battle, both teams executing combination plays and errors that pushed the set to a deuce. It was an over-received ball that gave La Salle’s spiker Vincent Lajarca a chance to put an end via a soft push, 28-26.
Down by two sets, the men in maroon evidently showed discomposure as they started the set with multiple attack faults that lent the Stallions an easy lead.
But despite the demeaning setbacks, the Wildcats’ Jerald Lovedorial and Marlo Dayapera still managed to flaunt their hopes as their back-to-back attack reduced DLSL’s ballooned advantage by two, 23-21.
While the Wildcats were trying to redeem their composure, Christian Dave Antonio of the Green Stallions capitalized on the perfectly set-up ball from Mayuga to quickly attack in the middle, crushing their rival’s chance to recover, 25-23.
Although delighted for the win, the Lipa-based squad team captain did not want his team to be complacent in the tournament, “Masaya naman pero kailangan ready pa rin tayo sa mga susunod na laro,” Hernandez stated.