College of St. Benilde overcame a slow start before hammering down a 25-21, 25-11, 25-10 victory over a hapless Arellano start to move a win away from sweeping the NCAA women’s volleyball tournament at The Arena in San Juan City.

Photo from NCAA/GMA

After a tight opening set that saw the Lady Blazers falling into a maze of errors, the squad of coach Jerry Yee quickly regrouped and displayed their old formidable form in the next two frames to draw the first blood in their best-of-three finals series.

Another victory for the Taft-based spikers would earn them a title sweep, having finished the nine-game eliminations unbeaten to earn the outright finals berth.

Gayle Pascual steered the Lady Blazers with 17 points built on 13 kills, three blocks and one ace while Michelle Gamit chipped in 11 points including nine attacks.

Yee said they didn’t adjust right away from the 11-day respite in the opening set, committing errors here and there that gave Arellano more confidence to keep the match close.

But four straight points unlocked the 16-all tie and gave the Lady Blazers the needed momentum heading to the first-set victory.

“Yung first set andaming nakakalusot na palo ng Arellano so we had to catch up. Nawala yung game speed namin, hindi kami makasabay,” said Yee.

The next two sets, as they say, were history as St. Benilde flexed its muscles to dominate Arellano.

Mycah Go also starred for the Lady Blazers with eight points while Cloanne Mondonedo and Chenae Basarte took turns distributing the ball well to finish with 14 and 11 excellent sets.

Pauline De Guzman scored nine points while Trina Abay, Charmina Dino and Cess Bello combined for 15 points for Arellano, but their efforts went futile.

Game 2 will be on Friday at the same venue, while Game 3, if necessary, will be on Sunday.

Source: Manila Bulletin (