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Eya Laure-less UST overcomes UP for last semis seat in Super League


UST Tigresses Super League

UST Tigresses. SSL PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines — The University of Santo Tomas relies on rising stars Xyza Gula, Pierre Abellana and Regina Jurado to beat the Philippine giants University, 27-25, 26-28, 25-18, 22-25, 17 -15, and earned a final semi-final spot in the Shakey’s Super League Collegiate Pre-Season Championship Sunday at the Rizal Memorial Coliseum.

The new Tigresses breed continues to emerge without Eya Laure, who is currently on vacation in the United States, with Xyza Gula standing up as the most important with 20 points, including killing the clutch in the fifth set.

UST produced a knockout with undefeated National University on Friday, while La Salle and Adamson clashed for another championship for the all-win finale on Nov. 19.

Abellana also went above chance, scoring five points in the deciding set and pushing UST on match point, 14-12. However, Tigresses made a catch-and-throw foul, followed by Ethan Arce’s massive save on Gula to equalize for goal, 14-all.

Gula put UST back at the top of the table but Jewel Encarnacion broke through their defense to force another draw. The UST rookie scored one more goal to reach a new match point, 15-14, before Jurado delivered a semi-final cross-court attack.

“We played our best. We did our best and didn’t give up,” Gula said in Filipino. “We want to prove that we are not just rookies. We are super rookies who can also play at their high level.”

UP relied on Encarnacion, Alyssa Bertolano and Nina Ytang but failed to reach the Finals.

Fighting Maroons were relegated to the classification stage along with Lady Tamaraws of Far Eastern University, Ateneo Blue Eagles and Perpetual Help Lady Altas.

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