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Top spiker Desiree Cheng showed the way for La Salle yesterday after lifting the Taft-based squad to resounding 25-23, 25-23, 25-21 win over University of Santo Tomas to clinch a twice-to-beat edge in the Final Four of the UAAP women’s volleyball wars at The Arena in San Juan.
Armed with 13 points, nine attacks, one block and three serves, Cheng’s service ace in the deciding third set sparked a fiery run that doused cold water on the Lady Tigresses desire to extend the game as La Salle gamely kept UST a distance.
But Cheng admitted that La Salle had “problems in blocking” coupled with the players’ bad timing early on.
Still, La Salle was still superior in the end as Cherry Rondina’s service error wrapped things up in the outing that saw main Lady Spikers hitter Kim Kianna Dy go down early in the third set owing to a mild left ankle sprain.
The win, its fifth straight, handed La Salle a 10-2 win-loss card, the same ledger of archrival Ateneo.
Despite what appeared to be an impressive win, coach Ramil de Jesus was not totally delighted.
“Siguro mas maging aggressive pa, lalo na sa floor defense. Kanina medyo masama ang receive namin at maraming service error,” he said.
Dy was on her way to a dominating showing and had already 12 points when she sustained an injury after attempting a block and had combined for 18 attack points with Cheng.
Ernestine Tiamzon was another major player with 11 markers while Majoy Baron and Kim Fajardo blended with 13 points.
Rondina led UST with 13 while EJ Laure and Dimdim Pacres had 11 and 10 points, respectively.
Earlier, Far Eastern kept its Final Four hopes alive as the Lady Tamaraws rumbled their way to a 25-14, 25-18, 27-25 victory over also-ran University of the East.