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NU’s Solomon regains groove in time for Game 1 win vs UST

MANILA, Philippines – NU’s Alyssa Solomon shook off her slump in timely fashion as she recovered with a team-high 17 points in Game 1 of the UAAP Season 86 women’s volleyball finals against UST at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Saturday.

After back-to-back single-digit outings in their semis series against the FEU Lady Tamaraws, Solomon finally looked like her old self against UST Golden Tigresses, as she built off her offense on 14 attack points and three blocks. She also had eight excellent digs.

In the post-game press conference, Solomon said that the work was done during their training leading to the series.

“Sa training ko ginawa 'yung mga lapses na kailangan ko i-improve. Sa training pa lang, binibigyan ko na agad 'yung sarili ko ng kompiyansa na babawi ako and alam ko din naman na nandiyan 'yung teammates ko para i-support ako sa pag-gain ng confidence,” said Solomon.

Even when her game faltered, Solomon was able to lean on her teammates, like former rookie Most Valuable Player Bella Belen, and NU stalwart Vange Alinsug.

Still, everything was always better when all three of NU’s offensive arsenal worked together. 

In their Game 1 victory, the troika combined for 42 of the Lady Bulldogs’ 75 points — more than half of their offensive output.

Now with a chance to close things out via sweep in Game 2 on Wednesday, Solomon hopes to be able to adjust to whatever the UST defense is going to throw at her.

“Siguro [it’s going to be] more on mindset. Kung paano mo i-set 'yung mind sa darating na game,” she said.

“It's either papayag ka ba na ma-scout ka nila or mabasa ka nila or dun ka sa point na hindi, hindi ako papayag na ma-scout ako, lalaban ako.”

Solomon, Belen and the rest of the Lady Bulldogs are seeking their second UAAP title in the last three seasons, after previously ending a 65-year drought with their first title in Season 84.