By: Ohmer Bautista
Buoyed by an undefeated streak, the surging BanKo-Perlas Lady Spikers dashed the Petro Gazz Angels’ semis hopes in straight-set fashion, 25-19, 25-19, 25-19, in the Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference Quarterfinals at the Filoil Flying V Centre.
“‘Yung momentum going to the semifinals, ‘yun ang gusto namin,” BanKo-Perlas head coach Ariel Dela Cruz expressed. “Napakalaking bagay para sa morale ng team.”
With the win, BanKo-Perlas (5-0) will now advance to the semifinals and will take on the second seed of the tourney, the PayMaya High Flyers. This also merits the defending champions Pocari Sweat Lady Warriors (4-1) a ticket to the next round, as they will try to topple the first seed, Creamline Cool Smashers.
Petro Gazz (3-2), on the other hand, officially bow out of contention.
The game started at a torrid pace, with neither teams resting on their laurels. However, BanKo-Perlas broke free after 5-0 blitz late in the first set.
BanKo-Perlas then carried the momentum onto the ensuing set as they mount a four point gap, 7-3. But Petro Gazz crawled back to knot things up, 7-all. BanKo-Perlas were not fazed, uncorking an 18-12 rally for a two-to-zero set advantage.
With their backs against the wall, Petro Gazz started the third set with urgency, taking the lead, 10-7. After going back and forth, the game went back to square one, 17-all.
Then, a go-ahead, Lakia Bright down-the-line hit changed the complexion of the game, inciting a 8-2 onslaught to ice the game for good.
BanKo Perlas import Bright led all scorers with 21. Fellow import Jutarat Montripila added 12 for the Lady Spikers.
Meanwhile, Olena Lymareva-Flink paced Petro Gazz with 17 points. Anastasiia Trach and Steph Mercado added 13 and 10 markers, respectively.
BanKo Perlas (3) – Bright 21, Montripila 12, Tiamzon 9, Ahomiro 5, Ferrer 4, Dacoron 1, Emnas 0, Roces 0, Tan (L), De Jesus (L)
Petro Gazz (0) – Lymareva 17, Trach 13, Mercado 10, Nunag 3, Cheng 1, Layug 1, Saet 0, Mendrez 0, Musa 0, Enclona (L), Cruz (L)
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