University of Sto. Tomas avenged its first-round loss and made quick work of Far Eastern University in straight sets, 25-23, 25-18, 25-23, to claim a solo third seed in the UAAP Season 81, Sunday at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Already qualified in the Final Four following UP’s elimination, the Lady Tigresses banked on their offense to quickly dispatch the Lady Tamaraws as they strengthened their fight for the too-important twice-to-beat incentive.
With the win, UST improved to a win-loss 9-4 card with 27 points, just a point behind potential semifinals foe and second-seed DLSU, who is now touting a 9-3 card with 28 points.
The victory also marked the España-based squad’s return to the semifinals since Season 79 while FEU has booked its fifth straight.
FEU, regardless of the result of their last assignment, is now locked at no. 4 as they absorbed their fifth loss in 13 outings. They will face a twice-to-beat Ateneo in the next phase.
UST will clash with the young NU squad while FEU faces DLSU next week.
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Sisi Rondina finished with a triple-double performance as she scored 21 points off 17 kills, three aces and a block laced with 15 digs and 12 receptions.
Eya Laure also registered 17 points for UST, while Ysa Jimenez added seven.
Heather Guino-o was the lone double-digit scorer for FEU with her 14 points as Jer Malabanan and France Ronquillo only managed five and four, respectively.
It was all UST in the first two sets with Rondina and Laure overwhelming the FEU side with their attacks.
The Lady Tamaraws came back from a 7-point deficit in the third and stole the lead for 22-21. Rondina then flies from the back to tie the match before Laure put on the finishing touches for the Golden Tigresses.
UST had the edge in spikes (41-28) and aces (11-3) while producing the same number of blocks with FEU (3-3).