SAN Beda University, behind rookie Ralph Cabalsa, ended University of Perpetual Help System DALTA’s 32-game winning streak with a 17-25, 25-27, 25-22, 25-23, 15-11 win on Friday in Game 2 of their 98th National Collegiate Athletic Association men’s volleyball championship faceoff at the FilOil EcoOil Arena in San Juan.
Cabalsa had 19 points and took charge during a crucial fifth-set rally that helped tie their title showdown at 1-1.
Cabalsa’s attack during a during a 6-2 run which shattered a 9-all deadlock, allowed the Red Spikers to turn the tables on the Altas in the fifth set.
The three-peat seeking Altas will now engage the Red Spikers to a winner-take-all Game 3 on Sunday.
The last time the Altas lost a game was in Season 93, when they bowed to Arellano University in Game 1. Back then, the Altas still took the crown after ruling the next two games.
Recently-crowned MVP Louie Ramirez led the Altas, who fought their way out of a five-point deficit in the second set. But Ramirez cramped up in the third set and missed the fourth as the Red Spikers battled to a 25-23 verdict.
Meanwhile, Vince Himzon of Letran was named the top rookie and the first Best Middle Blocker.
Barbie San Andres of Mapua University and Joshua Ramilo of Emilio Aguinaldo College were the two best outside spikers, while Jethro Cabillan of Arellano was the other best middle blocker.
Joshua Zareno of Perpetual was the best opposite spiker, while Bhim Diones copped the Best Libero award and Arellano’s Adrian Villados claimed the Best Setter honors.
In the women’s side, the DALTA pair of Mary Rhose Dapol and Shaila Omipon copped the two most coveted individual honors, with Dapol named as Season Most Valuable Player, and Omipon getting the Rookie of the Year award.