Troopers, Wrecking Balls clash for right to face Cignal in semis

Mark Escarlote on Aug 02, 2017 08:15 AM
Troopers, Wrecking Balls clash for last semis ticket
Sta. Elena and Philippine Army square off for one last time for the last semifinals berth.

Philippine Army and Sta. Elena dispute the fourth and last semifinals berth Wednesday in the men’s division of the inaugural Premier Volleyball League Open Conference at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan.

At stake in the 10:00 a.m. showdown is the right to face top seed Cignal in a best-of-three Final Four series starting Saturday.

The Troopers and Wrecking Balls sport identical 4-3 won-loss records after the elimination in a tie at fourth to fifth spots.

Sta. Elena hopes to bring the momentum of its two-game winning streak to make a repeat of its 25-15, 22-25, 25-21, 25-23, win over Army in their first meeting last July 16.

The Wrecking Balls are coming off a 17-25, 25-20, 25-15, 25-22, victory against the listless Café Lupe last Sunday to wrap up its elimination round campaign.

League-leading scorer Berlin Paglinawan, Isaah Arda, Israel Encina and setter Nico Ramirez are tipped to bring Sta. Elena back in semis after a fourth place finish in the Reinforced Conference.

The Troopers will lean on Benjaylo Labide, Romnick Rico, Manuel Medina and Jayvee Sumagaysay against the same team they defeated in the Reinforced Conference’s battle for third.

After suffering bowing down to Sta. Elena, Army went on a three-game winning streak with Gamboa Coffee being its last victim in a 25-21, 25-18, 25-19, cakewalk last Saturday.

The other semifinals pairing is between second seed Mega Builders and no. 3 Philippine Air Force.



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