After a lackadaisical opening set, the Easytrip Road Spikers brought out the fight and outmuscled the Lyceum of the Philippines University Pirates, 17-25, 25-15, 25-17, 25-23, in the 2019 Spikers’ Turf Open Conference at the Paco Arena, Tuesday.
“Masyadong disorganized nung first set e, parang hindi pa ready. Ang advice ko lang sa kanila, ‘We better start na maglaro ng maayos. Hindi dahil collegiate, ganun ganun lang. Niremind ko lang sila na kailangang ilabas nila yung laro nila,” said Easytrip head coach Jose Roque on his team’s first set woes.
Jerico Jose fired 13 points on 10 attacks, two aces, and a block to help the Road Spikers post a 2-1 card, tying Eco Oil-DLSU for the third spot of Group B.
Red Christensen and Dave Pletado provided 11 points apiece for Easytrip, while Mardy Galang finished the game with seven markers.
LPU, who fell out of contention with an 0-4 record, was led by Juvic Colonia with 13 points – all of which coming from attacks.
Also grabbing victories were the IEM Phoenix Volley Masters and the BCDA-Philippine Army Troopers.
Razzel Palisoc and the Phoenix Volley Masters booted out the National College of Business and Arts Wildcats from the playoff picture, handing the college-based squad a straight-set beating, 25-20, 25-19, 25-14, earlier in the day.
Palisoc converted 10 spikes for 11 points to propel IEM to 2-1 in Group A, while also pummeling down NCBA to a 0-4 card in the process.
“Nag-perform naman ng mga ayos yung mga players kaya nakuha namin yung game na ito. Lahat naman ng pinasok is nag-perform ng maayos kaya masaya. Sana sa next game maka-tsamba ulit,” said IEM head coach Pathie Jamiri.
Angelo Torres scored eight points founded on five hits, two blocks, and an ace, while Gian San Pascual provided six.
Carlo Almario came up big on the defensive end and finished with a double-double performance of 10 excellent digs and 10 receptions.
On the other hand, McLloyd Gabutero top-scored the Wildcats, with 11 points all from the attacking department.
After dropping their first four outings, the also-ran Troopers finally entered the winners’ circle with a straight-set rout of the San Sebastian College-Recoletos Golden Stags, 25-22, 29-27, 25-22, to end their Open Conference campaign with a victory.
Benjaylo Labide scored 11 points on eight attacks and three kill blocks. Joel Villonson provided nine markers for Army, who capped off the tournament with a 1-4 win-loss card in Group C.
Meanwhile, Michael Reyes and PJ Rojas provided five markers each. Nikki Demapaylo, who stepped up for Karl Ramirez, dished out 19 excellent sets.
“Kahit nalagalag kami, malaking exposure sa amin ‘to na makasalamuha yung malalakas na team at ganun din sa mga player ko. Kailangan may matutunan sila sa mga nakalaban nila, hindi lang basta-basta makapalo, dapat alam na nila,” said Army head coach Rico De Guzman, who now turns his focus on the Troopers’ AFP Olympics stint.
For the Stags — who were still winless in three outings — Reynald Honra continued to be the lone bright spot. He fired 16 markers for San Sebastian to lead all scorers.