MANILA, Philippines — It took six games, but Ateneo de Manila University veteran Bea de Leon finally scored in double-digits for the Lady Eagles in the UAAP Season 81 women's volleyball tournament.
The graduating middle blocker scored 14 points — including four blocks and four aces — as the Lady Eagles took down Adamson University, 25-8, 22-25, 25-16, 25-10, for their fifth straight win of the season.
Her performance earned her Player of the Game honors, much to the delight of her teammates and Ateneo coach Oliver Almadro.
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"About time, about time," said Almadro of De Leon, who had been averaging just six points per game heading into Wednesday's match against Adamson.
The senior contributed five points in their sweep of University of the Philippines last Sunday. Before Wednesday, her highest output was an eight-point performance against University of the East.
"I really admire Bea," added the coach. "Sabi ko nga sa kanya, points will come. Darating din 'yan, basta patience lang."
De Leon was instrumental in the Lady Eagles' bounce-back performance in the third frame, as she opened the set with a quick kill, then added back-to-back blocks on Adamson's Chiara Permentilla and Eli Soyud to set the tone for her team.
Afterward, the veteran gave full credit to her coaches and teammates for the patience they showed with her, as she groped for form to start the season.
"I'm most thankful siyempre kay coach, kasi 'yun nga, he reminded me na I don't always need your points, I just need your voice. Ayun, it gave me a lot of confidence na at least may tiwala pa rin siya talaga sa akin," said de Leon, who also serves as Ateneo's captain this year.
"(My teammates) saw me struggle talaga, and mahirap 'yun gawing mag-isa. So without them talaga, I wouldn't be able to do it, na magsa-sacrifice kami lahat to overload for one person," she added. "I need Deanna (Wong) to set for me, I need people to block with me."
"I keep asking for their help, so sobrang thankful ko for all of them for continuing to trust na kaya ko pa rin."
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