Philippine volleyball

Philippines bows to superior Japan, Thailand in PNVF International Challenge

JR Isaga
Philippines bows to superior Japan, Thailand in PNVF International Challenge

OVERPOWERED. The Philippine women's volleyball team falls to world leaders Japan and Thailand in the PNVF International Challenge.

PVL MVP Tots Carlos shines for the Philippines even as the women's national volleyball team bows to Japan and Thailand in the PNVF International Challenge

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine women’s volleyball team got blanked in its two-day exhibition campaign in the Philippine National Volleyball Federation (PNVF) International Challenge, culminating in a four-set sweep loss to Japan, 25-14, 25-9, 25-23, 25-19.

Premier Volleyball League MVP Tots Carlos continued her strong showing in her first national team stint with 14 points against the world’s No. 7 team at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan City on Sunday, June 12.

Mylene Paat also scored 8 while captain Aby Maraño chipped in 7 in the friendly game, which was set to end in four sets no matter what the set scores would be.

Despite long odds, the Filipinas led by Carlos actually gave the Japanese a strong fight in the latter two sets, and even led, 23-22, before falling to a 3-0 blitz.

The Philippines was still within 18-21 in the fourth set endgame, but Mayu Ishikawa effectively sealed the deal with back-to-back points for the 23-18 advantage.

Ishikawa led all scorers with 22 points off the bench on 19 attacks and 3 aces, while Airi Miyabe scored 13 in just three sets.

The Philippines also fell short a day prior to reigning Southeast Asian Games champion Thailand in three sets, 25-13, 25-10, 25-16.

No Filipina breached double-digit scoring, as Maraño led with just 6 points. Star blocker Dell Palomata added 5, while longtime star Alyssa Valdez was held scoreless.

On the winning side, Pimpichaya Kokram led the way with 15 points, while Sasipapron Janthawisut scored 13.

Both Japan and Thailand are currently in the country to prepare for the upcoming Philippine leg of the Volleyball Nations League. The Japanese currently lead the standings with a clean 4-0 record, while the Thais are not far behind at 3-1. –