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UAAP: Tigresses face Lady Spikers in beach volley finals

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Games today: (Sands SM By The Bay)
8 a.m. – UST vs FEU (Men Finals, Game 1)
9 a.m. – DLSU vs UST (Women Finals, Game 1)
10 a.m. – FEU vs UST (Men Finals, Game 2)
11 a.m. – UST vs DLSU (Women Finals, Game 2)
12 noon – UST vs FEU (Men Finals, Game 3)*
1 p.m. – DLSU vs UST (Women Finals, Game 3)*
*if necessary

University of Santo Tomas’ Sisi Rondina and Babylove Barbon will face De La Salle’s Michelle Morente and Tin Tiamzon for the UAAP Season 81 beach volleyball championship today at Sands SM By The Bay.

The best-of-three series opener is set at 9 a.m., with the Tigresses, who achieved a third consecutive elimination round sweep, eye to become the first team to win a three-peat.

“Siyempre, bonus na yung legacy. Ang gusto ko lang eh maibigay ang korona sa UST. Sobrang kalma na ako diyan,” said Rondina. “Malaking tulong talaga sa akin ang UST. Feeling ko ayoko nang umalis. Pero, matatapos at matatapos talaga.”

Gunning for a record sixth crown, UST has actually won a record 17 consecutive matches – a new league mark – dating back from the Season 79 Finals.

All eyes will be on Rondina, who hope to end her checkered collegiate career in the sand court as a winner.

The Lady Spikers are making their first Finals appearance since 2015 – when the Taft-based spikers, behind Kim Fajardo and Cyd Demecillo won their only beach volleyball crown.

On that year, the Tigresses failed to make it to the podium – the only time that Rondina missed a championship.

Morente and Tiamzon, who finished second in the eliminations, survived University of the Philippines’ Isa Molde and Justine Dorog, 21-16, 24-26, 15-9 victory in the second step-ladder Saturday.

In the men’s championship, UST’s Krung Arbasto and Jaron Requinton will face off with the undefeated Far Eastern University duo of Jude Garcia and Kevin Hadlocon for the title, also a best-of-three affair, at 8 a.m.

Arbasto and Requinton, the second-ranked team in the elims, dethroned National University’s Bryan Bagunas and James Natividad, 24-22, 21-15, in the second step-ladder.

Molde and Dorog assured the Lady Maroons of a second consecutive third-place finish after nipping the Lady Bulldogs tandem of Klymince Orillaneda and Antonette Landicho, 12-21, 21-19, 15-6. UP became the last semifinalist as it eliminated Ateneo, 21-19, 21-19, in last Friday’s playoff.

NU bested Adamson University’s Pao Pablico and Jesus Valdez, a 21-13, 21-16, in the do-or-die first step-ladder to assure itself of a podium finish.

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