Lady Tams confident despite Game 1 loss

By Kristina Villanueva

Games tomorrow

11 a.m. – NU vs UST (men’s)

Presentation of Awards

1 p.m. – Ateneo vs FEU (men’s)

4 p.m. – Adamson vs Arellano (women’s)

Presentation of Awards

6:30 p.m. – NU vs FEU (women’s)

MANILA, Philippines — Far Eastern University coach George Pascua rued his wards’ miscues that eventually led to their Game One defeat to National U in the Premier Volleyball League Collegiate Conference Finals late Wednesday night.

But he remained confident the Lady Tamaraws will emerge a better team from their 22-25, 25-21, 18-25, 24-26 loss as they vowed to duplicate their come-from-behind win against the Adamson Lady Falcons in the Final Four.

FEU also dropped the semis opener against the then-undefeated Lady Falcons but swept the next two to arrange the title showdown with the Lady Bulldogs.

“I am satisfied because they gave their best. It’s just that they succumbed in the end. It will only make us strong in Games Two and Three. It also happened to us in the best-of-three before. So I told them we should learn from that,” said Pascua.

But to pull off another escape act – against perhaps the most solid team in the fold, the Lady Tams must be able to continue to buck the odds, ride the pressure and minimize their miscues, particularly in the stretch.

Gametime is at 6:30 p.m. at the Filoil Flying V Center.

Down 1-2 in the match and trailing 15-21 in the fourth frame, the Lady Tamaraws mounted a stirring fightback, drawing level twice down the stretch, the last on a Celine Domingo kill that saved the match point.

But they faltered on a service error by Heather Guino-o and a mishit by Domingo in the next play, enabling the Lady Bulldogs to clinch the victory and move a win from completing their sweep of the crown in the season-ending conference organized by Sports Vision.

“That crucial point which led to a service error should have been ours. I guess it’s the mindset. We collapsed in the end,” said Pascua, also noting how they succumbed 35 errors in their 25-22, 26-28, 27-29, 22-25 defeat to the Lady Bulldogs in the group elims of the tournament backed by Mikasa and Asics.

The Morayta-based spikers committed 27 miscues, four more than the Lady Bulldogs with two coming at endgame that ruined their comeback bid.

Despite the Game One loss, Pascua remained satisfied with his wards’ performance, especially in the absence of their veteran leader and ace scorer Bernadeth Pons, who had to focus on her UAAP beach volleyball stint together with libero Kyla Atienza.

Without their team captain, the likes of Czarina Carandang, Toni Basas and Jeanette Villareal have stepped up and Pascua hopes the Lady Tams will continue to defy the odds and hack out another sweep of the next two games, this time against the Lady Bulldogs.

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