“Gawan natin ng paraan,” coach Onyok pleaded with the Lady Falcons as they stared down an 11-19 deficit in the third set. But try as they might, they could only delay the inevitable as UST took the set and the match with a dominant 3-set win.
Trouble started early for the Lady Falcons as errors and miscues saw them surrender a quick 3-8 lead to start the first set. Joy Dacoron tried to rally her troops with her signature running spike, going back-to-back but ultimately UST’s attackers proved too much to handle for the Lady Falcons.
Sisi Rondina would have tormented the Lady Falcons on her own, as her spikes continued to bounce through the hands of the blue-uniformed blockers in front of her. But life was made even worse for the Lady Falcons as Ejiya Laure started rifling off kill after kill against the Falcons.
The problem got so bad for the Lady Falcons that in the second set they allowed UST to go on a massive 8 to nothing run which only stopped because Rondina committed a service error. But even when faced with opportunities, the Lady Falcons failed to capitalize.
Coach Onyok could only look on as his players tried in vain to mount a comeback the same way they did in the first round. “Sipagan natin sa loob. Sipagan nating mag-block,” he pleaded with them as the errors and miscues piled up.
With the main guns of UST firing full clips, the pressure they imposed on the Falcons defense caused them to break down on even the simple plays. Free balls were no longer free as the threat of an impending spike caused them to hesitate to dive for UST’s send-overs.
Seeing the difficulty his players were facing, coach Onyok tried to shuffle his cards, sending in new faces to try and get some momentum going for them. Trisha Genesis and Nikka Yandoc saw significant play time and were able to manage a play or two but were ultimately outmatched by the more experienced spikers of UST.
After a pressing defeat, the Lady Falcons will need to regroup quickly as they try to repeat on NU on Sunday and finally get back to the win column.