August 14, 2022 (3:48 PM)

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BLOCKED. SON Panthers maintain a strong and steady defense against the SEA Tigers in the Palarong Atenista 2022 Volleyball Women’s Championship Game in Martin Hall on Thursday, August 11. Photo by Samantha Erika De Las Llagas

School of Nursing (SON) Panthers halted the School of Engineering and Architecture (SEA) Tigers from finishing the Palarong Atenista 2022 Volleyball tournament with a clean sweep after defeating them in four sets during the championship match, 12-25, 25-16, 25-22, and 25-18.

Team Captain Julia Angeles led the Panthers to seal the win with her unstoppable spikes. 

“I feel really great siyempre kasi ilang nights and days na kami naga training, and at least nag payoff na talaga ang aming hard work as a team,” Angeles told Atenews.

Although the Tigers saved four championship points, the Panthers’ gap was too large to close up as they ended the match with an over-received ball that caused a miscommunication, sending the top team home with a runner-up title. 

The Tigers went on for a really strong start in the first set, coming off with an 11-0 run just after Panther’s setter Lyberica Yee’s kickoff service ace to score the first point for the Panthers.

Communication and reception errors were SON’s main problem which gave away the first set to SEA with a comfortable lead, 25-12.

“We really just focused on our strengths and made sure that we applied that in-game. Positioning inside the court was also crucial, and I think the team did great on it,” Tigers Captain and Libero Krisha Dondoyano said.

Meanwhile, Angeles also shared that their team’s biggest challenge was their confidence in playing since most of them were first-time Palaro players, and their matchup with SEA overwhelmed them.

The Panthers regained their confidence by the second frame with a 4-0 run, coming off mostly from the Tigers’ errors.

Thanks to the tremendous support from the crowd, which boosted their morale, SON secured set 2 after a service error from SEA and took the series to 1-1, 25-16.

Dondoyano pointed out that their team could not recover from their errors, which stemmed from the nervousness and pressure they felt, along with the lack of communication inside the court. 

Looking for a comeback,  SEA entered the third set with a 9-4 lead thanks to Genesis Mate’s cut shots and Kathleen Lumbatan’s quick plays. SON quickly followed courtesy of Chancy Chavez’s and Angeles’ through-the-block attacks, putting the match at 12 all.

SON took over the lead, and Angeles ends the set with a down-the-line hit, with SON only a set away from taking home the crown, 25-22.

Yee pointed out, “Mas united kami as a team, and mas naga communicates kami,”  when asked about their team’s edge over their opponents.

“Nabuild namin yung mindset na kahit magkaerror ka, kailangan mo lang mag bawi as a team and I think relax lang talaga [kami] at confidence [lang] sa sarili,” Angeles added.

Eager to finish the game, the Panthers kicked off their hopeful last set with a 7-0 run, with a back-to-back ace by Chavez that took the Tigers for an early timeout.

SON was already unstoppable as Angeles powered through with open attacks that the Tigers could not counter, giving her team a 19-11 lead.

An attack error by SEA sent the winning team to match point at 24-14, with the Tigers off to clinch a 10-point gap.

“I am really thankful for [SON cluster] kasi I know na busy ang kanilang schedule especially sa mga CI (clinical instructor) na naga make time, thank you po sa lahat ng nag support” Yee expressed with gratitude. 

A double ace by Tiger setter Ashley Mata saved two of four winning points, but the top spot team gave away the throne to the Panthers after a team error, 25-18.

Moreover, the Business and Management (BM) Vipers clinched a podium finish after an intense battle for the third matchup against Accountancy Griffins, 2-1. 

Individual awards were also given to deserving players who stood out throughout the tournament during the Palarong Atenista 2022 Closing Ceremony.

The Best server award was given to Myles Cano (BM), Best Opposite Hitter was awarded to Aena Gonzaga (SON), and Best Setter to Diane Codizar (BM).

Moreover, Kathleen Lumbatan (SEA) was hailed Best Middle Blocker and Keanna Adlao (SEA) as the Best Libero.

Julia Angeles (SON) was awarded Most Valuable Player and Best Open Spiker.

The championship bout was held on August 11 at the 7/F of Martin Hall and was live streamed via the SAMAHAN Palarong Atenista Facebook Page.



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