University of Perpetual Help System Dalta seeks to defend their crowns in the men’s division as it faces off with San Beda tomorrow at the start of the 94th NCAA volleyball tournament at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan City.
Led by rookie MVP Joebert Almodiel, the Altas dominated the elimination round and swept their way to the finals in nine games, but found a strong challenge from the Arellano University Chiefs before prevailing in a series that went the full three games to cop their 11th titles.
The Junior Altas, for their part, reigned supreme in the high school side by sweeping the Letran Squires in two games in the finals to grab their 10th juniors’ championship.
Almodiel is expected to be at the forefront of the Las Pinas-based school’s campaign following the departure of Warren Catipay, Rey Taneo and Jack Kalingking, who have all graduated early this year after helping the team win the crown.
Filling the gaping hole left by the veterans are Ridzuan Muhali, Cocoy Ramos, Rnniel Rosales, Gilbert Balmores and rookies EJ Casana, Aljoe Sereno, Louie Ramirez, John Rick Baggayan, Awie Abdullah and John Christian Enarciso.
“We will do our best to preserve the winning tradition of Perpetual Help,” said Perpetual Help coach Sammy Acaylar.
In the women’s section, Arellano U opens its title-retention bid as it tackles JRU at 12 noon, which will precede the Perpetual Help-San Beda game at 4 p.m.
Jose Rizal’s Paul Supan, who heads volleyball’s organizing group, said JRU president Dr. Vince Fabella was invited to give the welcome remarks and will be joined by the national women’s volleyball team represented by Shaq delos Santos, Abi Marano and Mika Reyes as special guests.
“We expect an exciting tournament,” said Supan, who also mentioned the hosting will coincide with JRU’s centennial anniversary celebration in February next year