Todorovic powers Philips Gold past Petron in 4-set thriller to regain top spot
MANILA, Philippines - Philips Gold is simply unstoppable.
Power-hitting Bojana Todorovic exploded with a career-high of 38 points to put down defending champions Petron, 28-30, 29-27, 25-17, 25-23, in the last stretch of the eliminations in the 2015 Philippine Super Liga Grand Prix women’s volleyball tourney, Monday, November 16, at the Arena in San Juan.
Aside from American import Todorovic whose 38 points came from 34 kills and 4 service aces, another foreign reinforcement Alexis Olgard contributed 21 points and Maricar Nepomuceno meanwhile chipped in 10 markers to propel Philips Gold to lone top spot.
The Petron Blazing Spikers started out strong to escape the Lady Slammers in the first set, 30-28, with the offensive efforts of Brazilian import Rupia Inck and locals Dindin Santiago-Manabat and Aby Maraño.
However, tables turned after Philips Gold gained charge in the third set and started to dominate Petron with a 22-15 run made possible with the attacks of Todorovic and the defensive muscle by the net provided by Michelle Gumabao and Alexis Olgard.
Petron tried to save the fourth set after cutting the lead from 16-20 to 23-24 but Gumabao’s lethal hit sealed the deal for the Lady Slammers.
“Pinapakita na nila na ito kami ngayon,” Philips Gold Head Coach Francis Vicente said. “Championship ang target naming,” he added.
(They are already showing what we are capable to do. We are aiming for the championship.)
NU standout Myla Pablo was not able to play in today’s game due to academic concerns but it wasn’t a problem at all for the team as Maricar Nepomuceno stood out and delivered.
“Everybody should be capable to do their jobs. Tulung-tulong yan eh. Teamwork dapat,” Vicente said.
(Everybody should be capable to do their jobs. It’s all about teamwork.)
Rupia Inck led Petron with 26 points as Dindin Santiago Manabat and Rachel Ann Daquis submitted 13 and 11 points respectively.
Cignal blasts Meralco
The Cignal HD Spiker blasted the also-ran Meralco Power Spikers, 25-22, 25-19, 21-25, 25-21, to book a semifinals showdown with defending champions Petron.
Import Ariel Usher unleashed an impressive performance with 29 markers while Amanda Anderson added 18 points to boost their semifinal bid with a 7-3 win-loss card, now tied with Petron in rank two.
Philips Gold enjoys the top seat after trouncing Petron in today’s earlier clash.
“I just told my players that they just have to play without being pressured inside the court,” said Cignal Head Coach Sammy Acaylar.
True enough, his squad managed to play well despite Merlaco botching a straight set victory for them as Meralco nailed the third set.
A slew of errors by Meralco spelled their downfall in the deciding set.
Cignal will face Petron next in their do-or-die game on Thursday, November 19.
“It’s a challenge for me. It’s fun. I like being the underdog,” said player of the game, Ariel Usher, of their next game against Petron.
Meanwhile, Meralco ends their 2015 Super Liga Grand Prix campaign with a 1-9 record.