After seeing starter Arianne Layug go down in the first set, the Foton Blue Energy rallied and earned their fourth straight win against the Smart Giga Hitters, 26-24, 25-15, 25-19, in the 2018 Chooks to Go-Philippine Superliga All-Filipino Conference at the FilOil Flying V Centre.
Foton open hitter Layug crumpled on the floor after landing awkwardly on her left knee in the first set. The former De La Salle Lady Spiker had to be taken to the hospital immediately.
Instead of crumbling themselves, Foton mustered a late run and staved off Smart to clinch the opener. From there, the Blue Energy dominated each set, building double-digit leads and never looking back.
“Mixed emotions for us kasi maganda ‘yung nilaro and may mga nag-deliver pa rin from the bench. However, hindi namin mawawala sa isip namin si Arianne,” said Foton head coach Aaron Velez, as Layug is still being examined.
“We’re happy sa pinakita namin, but it’s very important for us to continue what we’re doing,” the youthful mentor added.
National University standout Mina Aganon led Foton with 13 points, while captain Maika Ortiz added 11.
Aiko Urdas and Jerrili Malabanan each managed eight points for Smart. Leading scorer Grethcel Soltones was absent for Smart due to a fever.
Foton (4-0) next face the F2 Logistics Cargo Movers (3-2) on Thursday at the same venue. Smart (1-2) will try to recover against the Cocolife Asset Managers (0-3), also on Thursday.
Foton (3) – Aganon 13, Ortiz 11, De Leon 6, Adorador 5, Rosario 5, Layug 3, Fabay 2, Sy 1, Perez 0, Yongco 0, Reyes (L)
Smart (0) – Malabanan 8, Urdas 8, Sta. Rita 7, Carandang 6, Latigay 5, Nabor 4, Macabalitao 1, Singh 1, Cayuna 0, Villegas 0, Eroa (L), Pantone (L)
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