Champs again: NCR outlasts Davao to regain Palaro volley title

TAGUM CITY, Philippines – Back on top.

National Capital Region reclaimed the title it lost last year after eking out a nail-biting 21-25, 25-16, 25-16, 19-25, 18-16 victory over a gritty Davao Eagles side in the finals of the 2015 Palarong Pambansa girls secondary volleyball on Saturday, May 9 before a wild and roaring crowd at University of Mindanao-Tagum campus gymnasium.

National University high school standout Faith Nisperos led the Big City spikers’ charge, firing 13 points while Carla Sandoval added 11 hits as NCR redeemed itself from a harrowing ouster in last year’s Palaro. Nisperos was also adjudged as MVP of the tournament.

Masarap sa pakiramdam kasi first time ng Quezon City (to represent NCR) sa Palaro at first Palaro ko rin,” said a euphoric NCR coach Rogelio Gebigan. (It feels great because it’s the first time Quezon City represented NCR in the Palaro and it’s also my first time here).

Dito na kami nabuo sa Davao. Sobrang hirap kasi iba-iba schools ng mga batang ‘yan,he added, referring to his volleybelles who came from NU, La Salle, Angelicum College and King’s Montessori School.

Thriller

Playing inspired volleyball in front of their home crowd, the Eagles, drawing big performances from the power-hitting duo of May Luna and Samantha Dizon, took the first set, 25-21 no thanks to NCR’s sloppy play.

It did not take long before NCR got their bearings back, though, as poor first ball and a maze of errors did damage on Davao Region, who eventually yielded the next two sets.

But the hosts would not go down without a fight as Luna and Dizon connived in firing rockets in the fourth frame to drag the match into a fifth and deciding set.

Both teams battled nip-and-tuck in the fifth set before a costly Luna service error shoved NCR to match point, 17-16.

Sandoval then sealed the gold for NCR with a kill from the left flank, 18-16, sending the NCR crowd in frenzy while leaving the pro Davao crowd in agony.

Luna paced the Eagles with 25 markers while Dizon chipped in 17 in their final Palarong Pambansa performance for Davao Region. – Rappler.com