In a match that had momentum swing wildly towards both teams, the F2 Logistics Cargo Movers avoided a late meltdown and took Game One of the Philippine Superliga All-Filipino Conference Finals over the Foton Tornadoes 25-20, 25-14, 9-25, 25-20, 15-10 at the FilOil Flying V Centre.
“Ganoon talaga ang problema sa team ko; kapag napapagod at lamang, nag-rerelax. Parang magbibigay ng set kasi tingin nila mahahabol naman nila sa dulo,” F2 head coach Ramil de Jesus said.
The Cargo Movers easily took the first set, bombing serves on the Tornadoes and taking a 16-10 lead all they way to their first won set. F2 then erased an 8-2 deficit in the second set to rally to a 20-13 advantage, nailing the second set and 2-0 lead.
Tides drastically shifted in the third set as F2’s reception and defense evaporated. Behind Rhea Dimaculangan’s and Cherry Rondina’s serving, Foton stormed to a 19-3 lead in the third set. F2 fought harder in the fourth set but succumbed in the clutch to clutch plays from Jaja Santiago.
As they had all season, F2 mustered a decisive closing run to the match. After back-to-back scores from Aby Maraño, F2 held an 8-4 lead. Just as Foton was about to come back, Kim Fajardo drilled a service ace to give Foton a permanent four-point lead, 11-7.
“Maganda na naipakita nila ‘yung character na kailangan para manalo sa close games pero hindi sana kami ganoon na maghahabol kung kaya naman kunin agad ang laban,” he continued.
Former UAAP MVP Maraño tallied a team-high 17 points, Ara Galang pitched in nine markers while Kim Dy added eight. F2 feasted on Foton’s 39 errors as they had only 27.
Cherry Rondina led the Tornadoes with 22 points while Jaja Santiago managed 19 markers.
Game Two will be on Saturday, 2:30 pm at the FilOil Flying V Centre.
F2 Logistics (3) – Maraño 17, Galang 9, Dy 8, Reyes 6, Fajardo 5, Cruz 4, Mercado 4, Gendrauli 2, Demecillo 0, Baron 0, Macandili (L)
Foton (2) – Rondina 22, Santiago 19, Araneta 8, Orendain 7, Dimaculangan 4, Ortiz 4, Laure 3, Cerveza 0, Perez 0, Acevedo (L), General (L)