September 29, 2023

La Salle foils UST in 4, cops men's crown

De La Salle University showcased its dominance over University of Santo Tomas as it captured its first-ever V-League Collegiate Challenge crown in a thrilling match that ended 25-22, 27-29, 29-27, 25-18, Friday evening at the Paco Arena in Manila.

The Green Spikers, who had previously won Game 1 with scores of 25-21, 16-25, 25-21, 22-25, 15-8, demonstrated their superiority over the Golden Spikers, capping their dramatic journey with a significant title win since UAAP Season 66. Noel Kampton played a pivotal role in securing the victory.

"Sa team ko, salamat sa kanilang tiwala sa akin. Kahit minsan, hindi nila ako naiintindihan, pero sa huli, iniisip nilang tama ang aking mga desisyon bilang coach," said acting De La Salle head coach Jose Roque.

Noel Kampton finished the game with a game-high 22 points, which were scattered throughout the two-hour-long match. He also contributed 11 excellent receptions that frustrated UST. As a result, he was awarded the Finals Most Valuable Player as the Best Outside Hitter.

Season Best Opposite Hitter JM Ronquillo produced 21 points, including back-to-back kills that led De La Salle to championship point. Best Setter Gene Poquita, with 24 excellent sets, played a crucial role in guiding the Green Spikers to victory.

In this match, Tournament MVP Josh Ybañez carried UST with a game-high 27 points, 24 of which came from successful attacks. The other Best Outside Hitter, GBoy De Vega, added 14 points to their effort.

Completing the men's Supreme Team were Best Middle Blockers Rainier Flor of UST and Lirick Mendoza of Far Eastern University, along with Best Libero Menard Guerrero, also representing De La Salle.