Lady Warriors survive elimination, force semis Game 3

Mark Escarlote on Aug 06, 2017 07:03 PM
Lady Warriors survive elimination, force semis Game 3
Myla Pablo (right) and Jeanette Panaga teamed up to lead Pocari Sweat to a five-set win to force a decider in the best-of-three semifinals against Philippine Air Force.

Pocari Sweat lived to fight another day as the Lady Warriors staved off Philippine Air Force, 25-22, 16-25, 23-25, 25-21, 15-12, Sunday to tie the best-of-three inaugural Premier Volleyball League Open Conference semifinals series to 1-1 at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan.

Myla Pablo, Elaine Kasilag and Jeanette Panaga teamed up in the fifth set to force a deciding Game 3 on Wednesday.

"Isa lang naman hinihingi ko sa team ko, magkaroon ng leadership. Iba na 'yung henerasyon natin nu'ng nakaraan, buhayin natin ulit ngayon," said Pocari Sweat coach Rico De Guzman, whose squad is looking to add another title after winning the Reinforced Conference a few months back and the V-League's Open and Reinforced conferences last year. 

"Kung wala tayong receive kailangan ko lang 'yung pumapalo ng high ball na consistent. Wala sa aking problema kung ma-block kayo. Ang ayoko lang 'yung palo outside or dropball," he added. "Ang sa akin palo lang ng palo walang problema."

Pablo smashed 20 attacks and scored two kill blocks for 22 points, Panaga had 18 markers with 12 coming off spikes while Kasilag finished with 12 for the Lady Warriors, who were swept by Air Force last Saturday in the series opener.

After tying the match to two sets apiece from a 1-2 deficit, the Lady Warriors kept its momentum going in the fifth frame racing to a 9-5 lead. But the Jet Spikers fought back to tie it at 9 capped by Judy Anne Caballejo’s service winner.

Pocari Sweat again went ahead, 11-9, but committed a reception miscue in the next play. Pablo sparked a crucial 3-0 run with an off speed hit, Panaga smashed an easy kill off Air Force’s misreceive before Pablo blocked Iari Yongco to push the Lady Warriors at match point.

The Jet Spikers saved two match points before Panaga iced it with an off the block hit at the middle.        

Dell Palomata posted 14 points, skipper Joy Cases registered 13 while Yongco and May Ann Pantino got 12 each for Air Force. Jocemer Tapic finished with 10.



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