The UST Golden Tigresses book a Final Four spot after repulsing Adamson University, 22-25, 25-20, 26-24, 25-20, in the UAAP Season 86 women's volleyball tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena on Wednesday, April 3. (Photo by Albert Earl A. Gomez / The Varsitarian)

UST SUPER rookie Angeline Poyos steered the Golden Tigresses to a Final Four ticket after sizzling with 31 points in a 22-25, 25-20, 26-24, 25-20 win against the Adamson Lady Falcons in the second round of the UAAP Season 86 women’s volleyball tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena on Wednesday, April 3. 

Poyos exploded for a career-high 31 points built on 27 attacks, three aces and one block. This performance set a new record for the highest scoring output by a UAAP rookie in the Final Four era, surpassing the previous record of 30 points set earlier this season by UE’s rookie Casiey Dongallo.

With the win, the Golden Tigresses clinched the first Final Four ticket after improving to a league-best 9-1 record, while Adamson dropped its fifth straight game to fall to a 2-7 slate. 

In the fourth set, UST held a slim two-point lead after an attack by Adamson’s Ishie Lalongisip, 16-14, but Poyos scored four points in a 5-1 UST run to expand their lead to six, 21-15. 

An attack error by Barbie Jamili and a quick hit by Mary Coronado sealed UST’s fourth consecutive Final Four appearance, 25-20. 

“Well-prepared naman ‘yong team. May kasamang swerte at nakuha namin ‘yong dati na inaasam namin na at least, mapasama kami sa Final Four,” UST head coach Emilio ‘Kung fu’ Reyes said postgame. “We’re happy kasi ‘yung hard work ng mga bata, hindi mo matatawaran e.”

The Tigresses went on an 11-5 start in the first set, but the Lady Falcons came alive and shocked UST with a 20-11 run to draw first blood. 

UST capitalized on the 10 Adamson errors to comfortably take the second frame, 25-20. 

Tied at 24-all in the third set, a quick hit and an ace by middle blocker Bianca Plaza propelled the Tigresses to a 2-1 lead, 26-24.

Regina Jurado and Jonna Perdido chipped in 12 points apiece, while UST team captain Detdet Pepito tallied 21 excellent digs and 17 excellent receptions.

Jamili paced the Lady Falcons in the loss with a career-high 20 markers, while Lalongisip and Ayesha Juegos tallied 14 and 12 points, respectively. 

The UST Golden Tigresses will next face the UP Fighting Maroons at the same venue on April 10, Wednesday, at 2 p.m.