HD Spikers seize 2-seed; Wrecking Balls force playoff for 4-seed
Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Jul 30, 2017 03:08 PM
Cignal is tied for the best record at the end of the elimination round of the 2017 Premier Volleyball League Open Conference.
However, they will have to settle for the second-seed.
Nonetheless, the HD Spikers will enter the semifinals on a morale-high after blowing out and blanking Instituto Estetico Manila, 25-18, 25-19, and 25-23 on Sunday at the Filoil Flying V Centre.
Peter Torres hammered down 14 points, Ysay Marasigan drilled down 12 markers of his own, Lorenzo Capate chipped in 10 caroms, and Cignal breezed through a match that only lasted 45 minutes.
With the easy win, the HD Spikers ended the elimination round with a 6-1 standing – similar to Mega Builders which has been pacing the tournament since the start.
By virtue of the Volley Bolt’s triumph over Cignal in their head-to-head, however, the former is the one-seed while the latter is the two-seed.
Oliver Almadro will take it, even though it means a matchup with three-seed and 5-2 Philippine Air Force. “We needed this win to enter the semifinals with a streak. Important ito to give confidence to our other players,” the head coach said post-game.
For the Phoenix Volley Masters, Kurl Rosete scored 14 points. They wind up their campaign holding a 2-5 card.
Meanwhile, the opponent of top-seed Mega Builders is yet to be determined.
Sta. Elena stayed alive for the fourth and final playoff berth following a four-set victory versus lowly Café Lupe, 17-25, 25-20, 25-15, and 25-22.
The Wrecking Balls got jumped on by the Sunrisers and surrendered the first set.
Berlin Paglinawan restored normalcy come the second set, however, and carried Sta. Elena in claiming the next three sets.
Paglinawan wound up with 15 points and had a more than capable running mate in Isaah Arda who had 15 markers of his own. They also took full advantage of the sloppy play of their opponents who committed 33 errors.
Coming through in their must-win match, the Wrecking Balls improved to 4-3 at the end of the elimination round – standing on level ground with Philippine Army.
As such, the two teams will have to fight over the fourth and final playoff berth on Wednesday still at the same venue.
On the other hand, Café Lupe exits the tournament without any win to show through seven games. John Millete was the lone bright spot for them with 22 points.
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