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#NCAA99: Lady Blazers flaunt another sweep; Blazers bow to Perpetual Altas

The #BenildeBlazers toppled against the Perpetual Altas, while the #LadyBlazers move close to another season sweep.

By Kobe Balderas | Wednesday, 1 May 2024

The De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde (DLS-CSB) Blazers and Lady Blazers battled it out against the University of Perpetual Help System-DALTA (UPHSD) today, May 1, at the FilOil EcoOil Centre in San Juan City. The Lady Blazers overpowered the Lady Altas, 3-0, while the Blazers stumbled against the Altas, 2-3.


The Benilde Blazers and the Perpetual Altas were the first teams to hit the court. The opening set was greeted with an immediate four-to-nothing run by Benilde after three successful consecutive attacks by Mike Balbacal and a service ace from Neil Manalo. The strong start by the Blazers fueled the Altas to answer back with a run of their own, headed by NCAA Season 98 MVP Louie Ramirez, the men in maroon and white dropped six unanswered points. The rest of the set saw both teams going back and forth, although it was the men in green and white who got the edge, 25-23.


Down a set, the Altas made sure to rally back in the second set, Ramirez displayed a glimpse of his MVP form, nailing sharp attacks over another, while the rest of his squad bolstered their floor defense. The Taft squad lost all momentum and gave up the second set, 16-25.  


The third set saw another close battle between both teams. The Altas continued to ride the hot hands of Ramirez, while the duo of Jacob Herrera and Christian Aguilar powered the offense of the Blazers. Both teams went at it until the latter part of the set, when Aguilar took over the offense of the Blazers, closing out the Altas, 26-24. 


In what was looking like a win for the Blazers, the Altas then showed championship poise, as they dominated the men in green and white in the next two sets. Ramirez and reigning NCAA Beach Volleyball MVP Jeff Marapoc rained down vicious attacks through the Taft squad’s defense. Aguilar, Balbacal, and Herrera tried to keep Benilde within striking distance, but ultimately the Altas proved to be too much, securing the fourth set, 15-25, and the final set, 8-15. The Blazers absorbed their fifth loss, while the Altas secured their eighth win. 


The Lady Blazers were next to hit the court, as they were set to face the Lady Altas. The ladies in green and white are seeking to move closer to an automatic finals berth, while the Lady Altas look to spoil the record of the reigning champions. The Taft squad didn’t need that much time to introduce themselves against the Lady Altas, as seniors middle blocker Mich Gamit and outside hitter Jade Gentapa headed the offense of the Lady Blazers to set up an early 8-3 run. The floor defense and the staggering offense of the Taft squad deemed to be too much for the ladies in maroon and white, as Benilde secured the opening set, 25-14.


The second set saw a more competitive Lady Altas, as the duo of Shai Omipon and reigning NCAA Women’s Volleyball MVP Mary Rhose Dapol powered the offense of Perpetual. Despite keeping things close, the Lady Blazers made sure to maintain the lead, as team captain Jessa Dorog and opposite hitter Clydel Catarig converted successful attacks, securing the second set, 25-18. The final set was an outright domination by the Lady Blazers, limiting the Lady Altas to only seven points, ending the set with an 18-point lead, 25-7. 


Dorog was named player of the game after dropping 10 points alongside 8 digs and receptions. 


The Benilde Blazers and the Lady Blazers will face the Lyceum of the Philippines University (LPU) Pirates on Sunday, May 5, at the same venue.


Set Scores:

Blazers vs Perpetual Altas: 25-23, 16-25, 26-24, 15-25, 8-15

Lady Blazers vs Lady Altas: 25-14, 25-18, 25-7

Tags: NCAA 99