USC, USPF, USJ-R, SWU-Phinma advance to Cesafi volleyball women’s semifinals

By: Glendale G. Rosal October 27,2018 - 10:46 PM

TWO of the most celebrated veteran female coaches in the local volleyball scene, Yolly Rizarri and Grace Antigua, are gearing for the much awaited semifinal round of the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi) women’s volleyball tournament as their teams clinched huge victories yesterday at the University of San Carlos (USC) gym in downtown Cebu City, which enabled them to advance to the top 4.

Rizarri, head coach of the University of Southern Philippines Foundation (USPF) Lady Panthers, said that they will train hard for the November 10 semifinals which will have a single round-robin format wherein they will face the top-ranked University of San Jose-Recoletos (USJR), women’s defending champion Southwestern University-Phinma (SWU-Phinma), and USC.

Rizarri said she has to instill discipline and hardcore training on the Lady Panthers so they will be fully prepared when the semifinal round begins next month.

“We need more training and we need more focus because we are too confident every time just like what we played earlier versus CIT-U, they did not take them seriously just because they knew that they are going to win the match,” said Rizzari.

They beat the hapless Cebu Institute of Technology-University (CIT-U) Lady Wildcats in straight sets, 25-16, 25-11, 25-13, to clinch their fourth victory with two defeats.

“We should take every match seriously and give everything on the court because I don’t want them to get used to being relaxed and overconfident especially that we are going up against the tough teams in the semifinals,” added Rizarri.

Despite being a critic to her own team, Rizarri still credited the tremendous improvement that she saw from her spikers considering that they only placed fourth last year and did not reach the semifinals.

“Our ultimate goal is to win the title just like the other teams, but let’s see how our games will go.”

The Lady Panthers are currently in third place, and ahead of them is the USC Lady Warriors who also had a dominating performance by upsetting the defending champions, SWU-Phinma Lady Cobras in straight sets, 25-20, 25-9, 25-16, to snatch their fifth victory with one defeat.

The Lady Warriors inflicted the Lady Cobras’ third defeat with three wins but head coach, Grace Antigua, said that their real goal is to reach the semifinals and from there, they will reassess themselves on how to deal with the other teams who also advanced to the top 4.

“Once we reach the top 4, that’s where we will start to gauge if we can really fight for a championship in both the men and women’s division,” said Antigua.

The USJ-R Lady Jaguars, who are considered the favourites to win the women’s title this year, smoothly sailed to the semifinals with an unbeaten record of six wins after defeating CDU in straight sets, 25-16, 25-10, 25-20.

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TAGS: Cesafi, SEMIFINALS, SWU phinma, USC, USJ-R, USPF, volleyball, women
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