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Cocolife scores first win at struggling Cignal’s expense


Leaning on Army veterans and their imports, the Cocolife Asset Managers rallied from a harrying deficit to claim their first win in the 2017 Chooks-to-Go Philippine Superliga Grand Prix, 19-25, 24-26, 27-25, 25-16, 15-9 in the league’s special Spiker on Tour leg at the University of Saint La Salle-Bacolod Coliseum.

The Asset Managers, like in their previous two losses, dropped the first two sets due to lack of coordination in the crucial, late stages.

“Napansin nga namin na sobrang hirap kami sa mga dulo ng laban namin noong first two matches. Ganoon nanaman kami nagsimula kanina,” rued Cocolife head coach Kungfu Reyes, “Kaya kinailangan talaga namin maghanap ng bagong halo ng players sa loob.”

In a bold move, Reyes sat team captain Michele Gumabao beginning in the third set. The change in lineup worked, as Cocolife found rejuvenation in their two imports Taylor Milton and Shar Manu-Olevao, and their Army contemporaries.

The Asset Managers gave up errors in the third set, leading to a long deuce which they claimed after clutch conversions from Milton and Olevao. Cocolife then had all the momentum heading into the decider thanks to a rousing fourth set victory. Down 6-8, the Asset Managers closed the match on a 9-1 run.

“Ngayon siguro nakita nila ‘yung kaya talaga nilang gawin. Malala talaga ‘yung sitwasyon namin kanina. Pero walamh sumuko. Naghanap lahat ng paraan para mag-contribute,” Reyes closed.

Milton finished with a game-high 25 points, six digs and eight receptions while Manu-Olevao added 23 markers off 20 attacks and three blocks.

The Asset Managers (1-2) look to build on their first win when they face debuting University of Santo Tomas (0-0) on Tuesday at the FilOil Flying V Centre.

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Cignal pulled most of their offense frim their reinforcements with Alexis Matthews gathering 20 points and Beth Carey managing 13.

Cignal (1-3) tries to end their struggles on Saturday against Iriga City (1-0) at the Malolos Sports Complex.

The Scores

Cocolife (3) – Milton 25, Manu-Olevao 23, Balse-Pabayo 11, Bautista 9, Bunag 6, Gumabao 5, Salak 4, Gonzales 0, Malaluan 0, Lazaro (L)

Cignal HD (2) – Matthews 20, Carey 13, Tubino 12, Gonzaga 11, Mercado 6, Paat 3, Marciano 2, Macatuno 1, Saet 1, Vivas 1, Dionela (L)

Written By

Miguel Luis Flores fell face first into sports writing in high sch9l and has never gotten up. He reluctantly stumbled into the volleyball beat when he started with Tiebreaker Times three years ago. Now, he has waded through everything volleyball - from its icky politics to the post-modern art that is Jia Morado's setting.


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