Fighting Warays snap skid, shock Lady Warriors
MANILA, Philippines – On the brink of another late-game collapse, Tacloban fought back from a fourth-set defeat and shook off an early struggle in the deciding frame to stun Pocari-Air Force, 18-25, 25-20, 25-22, 20-25, 15-9, and revive its floundering campaign in the Premier Volleyball League Season 2 Open Conference at the Filoil Flying V Center in San Juan on Saturday, October 20.
The Fighting Warays finally lived up to their name, recovering from a 0-2 deficit in the decider by taking the next 5 points before fending off the Lady Warriors’ series of rallies behind new recruits Dimdim Pacres and Jeannie delos Reyes, Jovielyn Prado, Heather Guino-o and Kyle Negrito to nail the elusive victory.
Blowing a 2-1 set lead to Motolite-Ateneo last Wednesday for its third straight defeat, Tacloban this time found a way to close out a game with Prado scoring 3 straight points, including an off-speed hit that put the Warays at match point, 14-9, before Pacres blasted in her 18th and last kill against Myla Pablo.
Pacres finished with 21 points, including 3 kill blocks, while Prado and Guino-o backed her up with 16 markers apiece, including clutch hits in the decider.
Though the victory kept Tacloban at 6th place at 3-4 at the close of its first round elims schedule, it proved that the Warays have the tools to hurdle even one of the fancied teams in the fold, dealing the former league champions their third loss in 6 matches.
The setback was Pocari’s second straight after dropping a similar five-set defeat to Creamline last week with the Lady Warriors hard-pressed to end their skid as they head to Bulacan for a key match with the BanKo-Perlas Spikers on Sunday in a grueling weekend assignment.
Jeanette Panaga paced Pocari with 19 points while Del Palomata and Pablo added 16 hits apiece and Iari Yongco finished with 10 makers.
Pocari tangles with BanKo-Perlas at 4 pm Sunday at the Baliwag Star Arena in the first of two explosive matches, which feature the league’s two other co-leaders.
Creamline, which stopped BanKo-Perlas’ run at 5 with an emphatic three-set romp last Wednesday, tests Motolite-Ateneo’s mettle in the 6 pm main dish.
In a three-way tie with the Spikers, the Cool Smashers and the Lady Eagles go all out to keep at least a share of the lead at the close of their first round elims assignments with Alyssa Valdez and company expected to use their veteran smarts against the young but tall Katipunan-based squad. – Rappler.com