Home Sports UST star Josh Ybañez repeats as UAAP men’s volleyball MVP

UST star Josh Ybañez repeats as UAAP men’s volleyball MVP


Josh Ybanez UST Golden Spikers UAAP Season 86 men's volleyball Final Four

UST Golden Spikers’ Josh Ybanez during a UAAP Season 86 men’s volleyball Final Four match against the FEU Tamaraws.–MARLO CUETO/INQUIRER.net

MANILA, Philippines — Josh Ybañez remained as the king of UAAP men’s volleyball after retaining his MVP crown in Season 86 moments before University of Santo Tomas’ do-or-die Game 2 against the four-peat-seeking National University on Wednesday at Mall of Asia Arena.

The sophomore spiker became the first back-to-back league top individual player since his fellow rookie MVP Marck Espejo of Ateneo won two in a row before ending his collegiate career as a five-time winner.

The General Santos native was the runaway winner with 89.643 statistical points, concluding the elimination round with 329 points, comprised of 303 attacks (ranking #1), 15 aces (#2), and 11 blocks. Additionally, he demonstrated exceptional defensive skills as the league’s best receiver (62.84% efficiency) and the sixth-best digger (1.66 digs/set).

Ybañez clinched his second straight 1st Best Outside Spiker after amassing 344 points for the position.

LIVE UPDATES: UAAP Season 86 volleyball Finals NU vs UST Game 2

The 21-year-old spiker is on a mission to extend the Finals series as UST seeks to bounce back from a straight-set loss in Game 1.

Last year, Ybañez became the men’s league’s second Rookie of the Year and MVP, becoming UST’s first MVP since Mark Alfafara, who is now part of coach Odjie Mamon’s coaching staff, won the award in Season 75 last 2013 and also emerging as a Tiger to win the top rookie in 15 years since Jayson Ramos in Season 70.

The Bulldogs’ freshman Jade Disquitado won the Rookie of the Year, becoming the first NU player to win the award since the first season of his graduating teammate Nico Almendras in 2019.

READ: Josh Ybanez leads UST rally past NU in UAAP men’s volleyball

Almendras won the 2nd Best Outside Spiker with 270 points, ranking sixth in scoring in the league with 213 points, achieved through 193 attacks (ranking 3rd in spiking efficiency at 46.84%), 17 blocks, and three aces and secured the second-best receiver position with an efficiency of 60.49%.

Owa Retamar was once again a runaway Best Setter winner for the second straight season, amassing a remarkable 269 positional points from his league-leading 5.67 excellent tosses per set and emerged as the best server, averaging 0.45 aces per set.

Far Eastern University star Dryx Saavedra earned the Best Opposite Spiker, while his teammate Martin Bugaoan was the 1st Best Middle Blocker despite the Tamaraws’ Final Four exit losing twice to No.4 UST.

Saavedra earned the title of Best Opposite Spiker after concluding the elimination round with 165 positional points, ranking ninth in scoring in the league with 176 points and held the position of the second most efficient spiker at 48.15%.

Saavedra and La Salle’s JM Ronquillo tied with 165 points, but Saavedra’s position as the best attacking opposite served as the tiebreaker.

La Salle, which fell to NU in the Final Four, had two individual awardees with Nat Del Pilar nabbing the 2nd Best Middle Blocker and Menard Guerrero being named as the Best Libero after ranking as the second-best digger in the league with 2.67 per set and the third-best receiver with a 57.38% efficiency rate.

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Bugaoan, a third-year middle blocker who clinched his second Best MB award, led the list with 213 positional points, topping the league in attack efficiency at 53.76% and ranking sixth in blocks with 0.58 per set.

Del Pilar, a sophomore blocker, concluded with 175 points, securing the second spot in the best blocker rankings with 0.75 per set.

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