The pairs of Alexa Micek-Charo Soriano and Fiola Ceballos-Bea Tan advanced to the semifinals of the Beach Volleyball Republic National Championship after separate wins on Friday at the Sands SM By The Bay in Manila.
Micek and Soriano first overcame a slow start against Bacolod’s Erjane Magdato and Alexa Polidario to take a 21-19, 21-16 win.
After falling by as much as 10-4 in the opening set, Micek piled up a slew of points as the duo tied the score at 12 apiece. Back to back points by Soriano made it 16-14.
Later, Magdato pulled Bacolod within 19-18, but a hit by Micek put the regulars at set point. An error from the opposing side gave Micek and Soriano the first set, 21-19.
Micek and Soriano then started off stronger in the second frame, taking a 13-8 cushion after back to back points from Soriano. The tandem continued to pull away after that point to seal a spot in the semi-finals.
Ceballos and Tan, meanwhile, fended off a tough challenge from Ilo-ilo’s DM Demontanio and Jackie Estoquia, 21-12, 15-21, 15-9 to advance to the semifinals.
Tied at SEVEN in the first set, Ceballos and Tan fired hit after hit to zoom to a sizable 16-11 advantage before taking the opening set, 21-12.
But Ilo-ilo bounced back in the second set, capitalizing on poor playmaking from Ceballos and Tan. A spike by Estoquia made it 17-10, as Ilo-ilo went on to force a deciding set.
Ceballos and Tan fell behind, 4-1 in the third frame but went on to stage a 7-2 run to take control, 8-6. Four straight points from Ceballos made it 11-7, as the duo held on for the win.
In the first quarterfinals duel, Air Force’s Judy Caballejo and Anna Abanto prevailed over University of Mindanao/Philippine National Police’s Lourdilyn Catubag and Karen Quilario, 14-21, 21-11, 15-11.
Air Force dropped the opening set, but got its bearings back with a dominant display in the second set, thanks to Caballejo’s unstoppable hits. Air Force then opened the third set on a 7-2 run after an ace from Abanto. The team never looked back from that point to advance.
Team Negros’ Jennifer Cosas and Floremel Rodriguez, meanwhile, dominated Team Cebu’s Jusabelle Brillo and Apple Saraum, 21-15, 21-13 to complete the cast.
Cebu had a difficult time against Negros’ services, falling behind to a 17-12 hole in the opening set. Negros went on to win the first set and did the same in the second set as the duo took a 17-9 lead before eventually winning the match.