A retooled Cignal HD Spikers raised the curtains on their 2019 PSL All Filipino Conference campaign on a high note, stomping the Sta. Lucia Lady Realtors in four sets, 25-27, 25-22, 25-10, 25-21, Tuesday evening at the FilOil Flying V Centre.
Cignal went through a rough patch in the opening salvo, trailing to the Lady Realtors for the majority of the first set. Though the HD Spikers knotted things up at 25 to force a two-to-win situation, MJ Phillips delivered the set-clinching kills.
“Actually kung mapapansin mo medyo magulo pa yung set-up…So ayun, minaximize ko lang yung position ng mga spikers ko, nagwork out naman,” Cignal head coach Edgar Barroga said.
“Yung mga open spikers ko, nagaalangan. So parang masasabi mo na bumabalik yung pagka-amateur attitude nila. So pinasok ko si Jovelyn [Gonzaga] na alam ko magkakaroon ng leadership at makakatulong sa loob,” he added.
Following Barroga’s adjustments, Cignal turned the tides to their favor to secure the second set. Carrying momentum into the third frame, the HD Spikers then fired on all cylinders, erecting a double-digit cushion with their balanced attack, all the while limiting Sta. Lucia to 10 points in the said set.
With momentum on their side, the HD Spikers continued to keep the Lady Realtors at bay to formalize their first win.
While Mylene Paat scored the most points for Cignal with 14, two of which coming from aces, it was UVC-turned-Cignal setter Alohi Robins-Hardy who made the biggest impact for the HD Spikers.
Robins-Hardy flaunted her playmaking and scoring abilities, tossing 18 excellent sets to help three HD Spikers grace double-digit threshold, and notching 12 points built on seven attacks, three aces, and two blocks.
Cignal skipper Rachel Daquis added 13 points, spiked by five blocks, on top of 19 excellent digs. Gonzaga, who surprisingly suited up for Cignal and came off the bench, supplied 11 markers, all coming from attacks.
Fil-Am Phillips poured in a game-high 19 points off 16 attacks and three blocks that went for naught. Rachel Austero, who had four blocks, finished with 13 points while Joy Dacoron supplied 11.
Cignal tries to sustain momentum as it face PLDT on Thursday, June 27 at the FilOil Flying V Centre. Sta. Lucia, meanwhile, drops to a 1-3 card and seeks a bounce back win at Generika Ayala’s expense on July 2 at Cadiz City.
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