The Bali Pure Purest Water Defenders cemented their place in the semis after sweeping the struggling Laoag Power Smashers, 25-22, 26-24, and 25-13, in the 13th Shakey’s V-League Reinforced Conference Monday night at the Philsports Arena in Pasig City.
Three players scored in double figures to lead BaliPure in tonight’s victory. American Katherine Morrell paced the Purest Water Defenders with 21 markers off 18 attacks. Amy Ahomiro scored 14, while Kaylee Manns chipped in 13 markers along with 46 excellent sets.
With Jorelle Singh heating up on offense, Laoag managed to climb back from a 16-13 deficit to force an 18-all tie late in the first set. But, numerous errors brought their momentum down, allowing BaliPure to break the tie first as Morrell and Ahomiro scored off kills to take the lead, 23-21. Laoag tried to surge back, but two more attack errors helped BaliPure seal the set for, 25-22.
The second set saw Laoag buck yet another slow start, surging back with a 6-2 run led by Singh to switch a 16-13 lag in their favor, 19-18. BaliPure came back strong and from there, both squads went back and forth with each other, sending the frame to a deuce at 24-all. With her offense picking up, Morrell delivered two straight kills to break the deadlock and send Balipure to a 2-0 lead, 26-24.
The Purest Water Defenders regained their old, dominant form in the final set, as Morrell and Ahomiro lifted BaliPure to a 17-7 lead midway. Singh and Laoag managed to score a few points for a comeback attempt, 24-13, but it was all too late as Morrell delivered the knockout punch through a back row attack to close the door for the Power Smashers, 25-13.
“We’re keeping it one game at a time, since our goal is to keep on improving,” said BaliPure team captain Charo Soriano with regards to her team earning a slot in the semis.
“We’re happy that we made it into the semis, but we would also like to focus on our remaining games,” she furthered.
Singh and Gretchel Soltones paced Laoag with 16 and 11, respectively, in a losing effort, which sends the Power Smashers out of the playoffs picture with a 2-5 card.
BaliPure (4-1) will have their acid test this Saturday, October 29, at 4 PM as they face their rivals and another surging team in Pocari Sweat Lady Warriors.
BaliPure (3) – Morrell 21, Ahomiro 14, Manns 13, Roces 6, Gervacio 4, Devanadera 2, Tajima 0, De Jesus 0, Soriano 0, Lazaro L.
Laoag (0) – Singh 16, Soltones 11, Urdas 5, Villegas 3, Eulalio 1, Saet 1, Guillema 0, Sta. Rita 0, Prado 0, Eroa L, Galang L.