University of Santo Tomas drew first blood against Far Eastern University, 25-23, 25-20, 25-21, to kick off its UAAP Season 84 women’s volleyball campaign on a high note at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City Thursday, May 5.

Eya Laure (center) of University of Santo Tomas celebrates after scoring against Far Eastern University (UAAP Media Bureau)

The Golden Tigresses made up for their errors and bucked the early absence of Imee Hernandez, who suffered from a sprain in the opening canto off a bad fall, and banked on the services of Eya Laure and Camille Victoria.

Laure posted 14 points off 13 attacks and a block while Victoria hammered down 11 of her 12 points off spikes as UST improved to a 1-0 record while FEU slipped to a 0-1 slate.

“Medyo shaky ‘yong performance namin though nanalo naman. Masyadong marami ‘yong unforced errors namin na kailangan naming i-correct,” said Tigresses head coach Kungfu Reyes as his wards gave up 23 points off errors. “Pero luckily, nanalo nga kami ng straight sets.”

The Tigresses took a commanding 17-7 lead in the third frame before the Tamaraws uncorked a 7-2 blitz to put the game within striking distance, 19-14.

Laure alone, however, proved to be too much for FEU before Ysa Jimenez joined in the fray for the win.

The Tamaraws clawed their way back in the second set and negated the Tigresses’ early 8-0 spurt to tie at 15-all.

Kecelyn Galdones easily scored from the service line before Laure took charge to put the finishing touches with back-to-back conversions to secure the set victory.

FEU came close in the first frame and only trailed by one, 24-23, but a service error by Jean Asis proved to be costly as UST took the set.

Lycha Ebon paced the Tamaraws with nine points from seven spikes while Nikka Ann Medina scored all eight points off attacks.

UST faces University of the East on Saturday, May 7 at 6 p.m. while FEU takes on University of the Philippines at their 4 p.m. encounter.

Source: Manila Bulletin (