Perpetual Outlast San Beda in Five-Setter

Perpetual Help leaned on its bench depth as it edged a fiesty San Beda, 23-25, 25-19, 27-29, 25-15, 15-7, yesterday to move two wins closer to an elimination round sweep in the men’s division of the 91st NCAA volleyball tournament at The Arena in San Juan City yesterday.

Allan Jay Salaan led all hitters with 14 hits but it was the troika of Relan Tano, Neil Barry Ytorzaita and John Patrick Ramos who delivered in the stretch, coming through with a combined 23 points, most of which came in the fifth and final set.

The win propelled the Altas, who were out to regain the title they lost to the Emilio Aguinaldo Generals last year, to their seventh straight victory and two wins shy of sweeping their way straight to the finals and earning a thrice-to-beat advantage.

To accomplish such feat, Perpetual Help will need to hurdle EAC, the reigning titlist, tomorrow (Friday) in what could be a sneak preview to this season’s finale and Letran on Sunday.

And the Las Pinas-based school is itching closer to its showdown with EAC.

“We’re looking forward to that, it’s going to be an interesting match,” said Perpetual Help coach Sammy Acaylar.

Just like it’s men’s counterpart, Perpetual Help’s juniors team is also unbeaten, nailing its fifth win in row at the expense of San Beda with a quick, merciless 25-14, 25-19, 25-8 win earlier.

The Junior Altas play the Brigadiers (5-1) and the Squires (2-4) in their final elims assignments to complete a sweep and book an outright trip to the finals.

In women’s play, Perpetual Help downed San Beda, 25-19, 25-21, 25-22, to solidify its spot at No. 4 with a 5-2 record.

San Sebastian leads the way with a pristine 7-0 mark while defending champion Arellano U and St. Benilde are tied at No. 2 with 6-1 slates.