After absorbing their first loss of the season last night against the Cignal HD Spikers, the Petron Blaze Spikers powered past the injury-plagued Foton Tornadoes, 26-24, 25-22, 25-19, 25-21, to notch their first win in the Final Round of the 2017 Invitational Cup, at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan City.
After slugging it out in the first two sets, the Blaze Spikers found their groove in the third set with their starting rotation back in the fold. The Blaze Spikers used solid defensive plays to stifle Foton’s attack, amassing 47 digs in the process.
National Team veteran Aiza Maizo-Pontillas led Petron’s balanced attack with 15 points, while Ces Molina added 13.
“Sinabi namin sa kanila kahapon na alam namin na hindi ganoon ang laro nila. Binigay naman namin ‘yung best namin. Hindi lang talaga sapat sa dulo,” said Petron head coach Shaq Delos Santos, referring to their loss to the Cignal HD Spikers yesterday.
“Happy kami na nakabawi aga ngayon. Kailangan talaga kasing maka-move on agad kasi hindi naman titigil ang laro.”
The Blaze Spikers will face Japanese guest team Kobe Shinwa Women’s University tomorrow to culminate their conference.
“Kahapon pinanood namin sila (Kobe). Nakakatuwa sila panoorin. Knowing Japan naman, alam mong nandoon ‘yung bilis, ‘yung skills nila talagang maganda. Bilang ‘yung mga panget na ibibigay nilang bola,” added the first year mentor.
“Marami kaming matutunan sa kanila. Para sa amin, malaking advantage ‘to para sa teams sa PSL. Gagawin namin ang best namin bukas,” vowed Delos Santos.
Grethcel Soltones tallied a season-high 28 points but was the only bright spot for Foton, who were missing Dindin Santiago-Manabat due to a knee injury.
Foton end their conference tomorrow against the Cignal HD Spikers.
Petron (3) – Pontillas 15, Molina 13, Aganon 12, Reyes 10, Tunay 8, Rosario 7, Dimaculangan 3, Pineda 3, Hingpit 1, Dolar 0, Zapanta 0, Dusaran (L)
Foton (1) – Soltones 28, Berte 9, Ortiz 7, Barrinuevo 5, De Leon 4, Villegas 4, Perez 3, Sindayen 1, Yongco 1, Reyes (L)