Perpetual Help leaned on its strong attacking game as it turned back St. Benilde, 25-22, 25-22, 26-24, yesterday to set in motion its title-retention campaign in the 92nd NCAA men’s volleyball tournament at the Filoil Flying V Center in San Juan City.
Sophomore Esmail Kasim unloaded a match-high 15 hits, 10 on kills, three on service aces and two on blocks, to help power the Altas to an early share of the lead with the Letran Knights and the Mapua Cardinals.
Letran escaped with a come-from-behind 19-25, 12-25, 25-20, 25-22, 15-10 victory over hard-luck Lyceum while Mapua overpowered Jose Rizal, 25-22, 25-15, 25-20, earlier.
Rey Taneo Jr. and Allan Jay Sala-an, both vital cogs in the Las Piñas-based school’s title romp a season ago, teamed up with Kasim by scattering 12 and 10 points, respectively.
The other Taneo, setter Relan, did the facilitating by dishing out 30 excellent sets.