UST Tiger Sands crowned kings, queens of UAAP beach volleyball

Photo by Kristine Joy Diane Sarmiento/THE FLAME

THE UST Tiger Sands dominated the UAAP Season 86 beach volleyball after securing a golden double against their archrival NU Bulldogs at the Sands SM By the Bay on Tuesday, Nov. 28.

The Lady Tiger Sands showed superiority by sealing their sixth straight title in the women’s division, while the Tiger Sands completed a five-peat in the men’s division.

The National University bagged silver, while the Far Eastern University settled for bronze in both divisions.

The duo of Sofiah Pagara and Gen Eslapor exhibited precise offense and defense against last season’s runner-up NU Lady Bulldogs Honey Grace Cordero and Kly Orillaneda via sweep, 21-10, 21-17.

UST whipped their NU foes to take the first set with a double-digit advantage, 21-10.

During the second set, the rookie-senior duo maintained their momentum to seal UST’s sixth consecutive title in the league’s women’s beach volleyball tournament with a 7-1 record.

On the men’s side, UST’s Alche Gupiteo and Rancel Varga survived NU’s James Butrago and Alex Iraya in straight sets, 21-15, 24-22.

The Tiger Sands showed resilience as they hurdled a tough second set against the Bulldogs, the only team that edged them in the elimination round. The Thomasians ended the set with a 7-1 record.

Pagara, a product of the UST high school beach volleyball program, bagged this season’s Rookie of The Year plum, while Eslapor took home the women’s Most Valuable Player award.

Gupiteo was hailed as this season’s MVP in the men’s division.

UST’s beach volleyball program now boasts a total of nine and eight crowns in the women’s and men’s divisions, respectively. F – M.N.Z.S

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