Laoag books last semis ticket, shows UP the exit door
Mark Escarlote on Jun 27, 2016 06:48 PM
Laoag earns a trip to the semifinals.
Laoag dodged the bullet in the fourth frame and turned back University of the Philippines, 25-21, 19-25, 25-22, 26-24, Monday to secure the last semifinals seat in the 13th V-League Open Conference at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig City.
Squandering a four-point lead at match point, the Power Smashers banked on the Adamson duo of Jessica Galanza and Mylee Paat to finish off the Lady Maroons and cap their eliminations campaign with a 4-3 win-loss record and first back-to-back wins in the conference.
But it was Arellano University’s Jovielyn Prado that carried the bulk of the scoring load for Laoag with 23 points collected from 22 powerful smashes and a kill block. Prado had 12 digs.
The Power Smashers will face the top seed in the best-of-three semifinals starting Wednesday. Pocari Sweat and Air Force dispute the no. 1 spot as of posting.
“Siyempre ang unang goal namin na makapasok muna sa Final Four na-achieve na namin. Ngayon kailagan naming paghandaan ang semis,” said Laoag coach Nes Pamilar.
Paat and Galanza contributed with 14 and 13 points, respectively, for Laoag. Galanza led the Power Smashers on manning the floor with 17 digs and 16 perfect receptions.
The Lady Maroons, who tied National University at 4-4 slate, bid goodbye to the conference despite showing a good fight in the second set where they dominated Laoag.
“Masyadong mabagal e. Ang sinasabi ko nga sa kanila na, “Hindi ‘yan ang pinraktis natin,”” said Pamilar of their second set loss. “Sumusunod kayo sa galaw ng kalaban. Kailangan mas mabilis ang galaw natin sa kanila.”
Laoag led UP, 24-20, in the fourth set only to see it evaporate as the Lady Maroons churned four straight points to tie the set.
Galanza scored on a hit before Paat sealed the match with a hammer from the middle.
Diana Carlo led UP with 19 points in a lost cause. Isa Molde finished with 16 while Nicole Tiamzon had 11.
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