University of Perpetual Help System Dalta seeks for a triple kill while Arellano University guns for a three-peat feat as the two collide one last time on Tuesday in the 94th NCAA volleyball tournament at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan City.
With the men’s and juniors’ titles already in the bag, the Lady Altas will try to add the women’s crown in the collection, claim a rare volleyball treble and join an elite club that consists of Ateneo, a former member, and San Sebastian that accomplished such feat.
“We’re looking at history unfolding and it’s really up to us to complete it,” said UPHSD coach Macky Carino.
Ateneo did it in 1984 while San Sebastian completed it a record six times in 1984, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996 and 2002.
It will also end Perpetual Help’s title drought since snaring a three-peat feat in the women’s division five seasons ago.
It was close to achieving a triple kill last Friday after UPHSD swept its way to the men’s and juniors’ crowns after sinking College of St. Benilde and Letran, respectively, and forcing a fifth and deciding set in the women’s class against AU.
But the Lady Chiefs were not to be denied and recovered from a fourth set meltdown by showing nerves of steel in the fifth set to escape with a 23-25, 25-9, 25-18, 22-25, 15-12 win that forced the decider set at 4 p.m.
The Lady Altas stole the series opener, 21-25, 25-17, 25-21, 25-20, Feb. 1.
AU is aiming for a third straight title and fourth overall in the last five seasons.
Reigning MVP Nicole Ebuen keyed AU’s Game Two win, leading the attack with 18 hits and helping in defense with 18 digs.
Princess Bello, Carla Donato and Regine Arocha were also instrumental as they contributed 18, 13 and 12 points, respectively, to help AU knot the series at one game apiece and forge a game for all the marbles.
For UPHSD, it is expected to rely anew on Cindy Imbo, who was the hero in Game One and was also the player behind its mighty fourth set fightback before succumbing in the final set and finishing with a team-best 18 points.