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Coach gifts Ateneo spikers with playing time, Lady Eagles respond with win

By Josiah Albelda Posted Dec 18th 2013

The Ateneo Lady Eagles cruised to their third straight win to earn a share of second place.

Ateneo de Manila University coach Tai Bundit has one gift for his Lady Eagles: Playing time for everyone.

And up against a listless University of the East side, it wasn't hard to dole out.

The Katipunan spikers made mincemeat of the Lady Warriors, 25-11, 25-15, 25-17, to book their third straight win in the 76th UAAP women's volleyball tournament Wednesday at the FilOil Flying V Arena.

With Christmas just a week away, Bundit made it a point to let all 14 of his players see action on court for the first time this season.

"Today, I wanted everybody to play," the Thai coach said after the victory. "It's Christmas time. I want everybody to be happy."

The Lady Eagles responded well to Bundit's treat, firing relentlessly at UE's nonexistent defense to seal a share of second place with a 3-1 card at the end of 2013.

Alyssa Valdez led all comers with an explosive 21-point output, delivering 13 hits, three blocks and a season-best five aces to punish the Lady Warriors in just a little over an hour.

Amy Ahomiro and rookie Ana Gopico each posted nine markers for Ateneo, who nailed 36 of their 76 spike attempts (47.4%) while also serving up 12 aces. 

The only people not happy today, however, was the UE squad, who fell to its 21st consecutive defeat dating back to Season 74.

"Hindi ko alam kung bakit ang baba ng laro nila ngayon," a frustrated coach Boy Dalistan said about his players. "Masama siguro gising o kaya na-intimidate sa crowd ng Ateneo."

The Lady Warriors played worse than their 0-4 standing shows, not even completing a single excellent set -- the first such game in recent UAAP history.

The result was a shellacking by the Lady Eagles, who continued their rise after an opening-day defeat to National University.

Rookie Shaya Adorador paced UE anew with six points.