MANILA, Philippines – BanKo-Perlas cashed in on Ateneo-Motolite’s meltdown and cruised to a 27-25, 25-19, 25-11 victory to extend its win run to 4 in the Premier Volleyball League Season 2 Open Conference before a big Sunday crowd, October 7, at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan.
In a duel of the last two unbeaten teams that had barely taken hours of rest, the Perlas Spikers used their veteran smarts and wore down the Lady Eagles with their power game behind Nicole Tiamzon and Kat Bersola to remain on top of the eight-team field.
Tiamzon, who scored just 6 points in their 25-20, 19-25, 25-22, 25-16 win over the Adamson-Akari Lady Falcons Saturday, came away with 17 hits, including 12 attack points and 4 blocks as the Perlas Spikers broke away at endgame of the 2nd frame then pounced on their listless rivals who simply lost steam and faded in the 3rd.
Dzi Gervacio also flashed fierce form against her former team, blasting away backrow attacks to provide solid backup to the former UP teammates with 13 kills for a 14-hit output. Bersola finished with 11 points.
The back-to-back weekend victories came 3 days after the Perlas Spikers took the bronze in the Vinh Long Cup in Vietnam.
The Lady Eagles, who outlasted the fancied PetroGazz Angels in 5 the previous night, blew 2 set points in the opener and failed to keep pace with the latter’s sustained charge in the next two frames.
Kat Tolentino and Maddie Madayag combined for 21 markers while Bea de Leon added 6 hits and Deanna Wong chipped 4 points for Ateneo, which dropped to third at 2-1 behind idle Pocari-Air Force’s 3-1 mark.
“We stayed focused and worked point-for-point,” said Tiamzon, referring to their extended first set escape where the Perlas Spikers outhit the Lady Eagles, 16-10, but got clobbered in blocks, 1-7.
“Na challenge siguro ang mga players ko kasi parehas kaming walang talo,” said BanKo-Perlas coach Dong dela Cruz, whose wards battled back from 22-24 down in the first set to force a deuce.
(They were challenged because it’s a battle between unbeaten teams.)
For a while, the 2nd set appeared headed to another tight finish with the Lady Eagles keeping the game close at 16-18. But the Perlas Spikers, with Tiamzon on the firing end, unleashed a strong finishing kick to go 2-0.
Five straight points kicked off BanKo-Perlas’ third-set charge and Ateneo-Motolite failed to recover from there with Bersola joining Tiamzon on the net. The duo also combined for at least 4 kill blocks as the Perlas Spikers went unassailably ahead at 13-2.
Joy Dacoron’s running attack gave BanKo-Perlas a 23-8 bubble then Bersola finished off the Lady Eagles with two quick hits that sandwiched Ateneo’s last three points.
In the second match, Alyssa Valdez blasted in 12 kills, came through with 3 kill blocks and delivered an ace as Creamline crushed Iriga-Navy in a virtual workout, scoring a 25-13, 25-12, 25-9 victory to join Ateneo at second.
The Lady Oragons fell to 0-5. – Rappler.com
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