Their matchup Saturday might not have lived up to the hype, but Ateneo ace spiker Rex Intal believes that NU will be a force to reckon with in UAAP men’s volleyball in the near future.
The Blue Spikers set the tone on offense and defense early to feast on the Bulldogs, 25-19, 25-15, 25-15, at the Smart Araneta Coliseum to close out their 1st round campaign at 6-1.
“I guess they will be a big threat in the coming years so we have to prepare for them,” said Intal, who had 6 points.
What others considered a heavyweight match-up turned into a lopsided game as Ateneo dominated from start to finish while exposing NU’s weak floor defense.
“Siguro kung icocompare ko yung last year na NU, yung experience talaga. Siyempre puro veterans yung NU last year and madiskarte sila but yung okay yung sa NU this year, mas bata sila at malaki pa, mataas tumalon,” he added.
After their impressive win, Intal credited it on the all-around effort to end their 3-game week with a bang.
“I guess lumabas lang yung what we trained the whole week but we didn’t see it as a special game, we treat it as a normal game because wala namang 2 wins if manalo kami sa NU,” he said.
Curiously, Ateneo’s ‘normal’ game was too much for their rivals off Sampaloc, with the Bulldogs limited to 49 total points, a far cry from their usual output.
“Our goal talaga is to minimize NU’s blocking and attack harder, I guess napag-aralan lang talaga namin sila and namotivate kami to block more and mas energized kami maglaro,” said Intal.
“We were hungrier to win so nag payoff naman siya sa different aspects ng laro.” — By Jason Mercene