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Tiebreaker Times


Mau, Maraño link up, lead F2 Logistics to PSL Finals

The F2 Logistics Cargo Movers overcame the Foton Tornadoes Blue Energy in the semifinals, 25-19, 25-23, 17-25, 25-19, to enter their fourth straight PSL All Filipino Conference Finals at the Muntinlupa Sports Center, Tuesday.

“Well, big challenge yung kanina. Pumasok ulit kami sa Finals. Maghihintay muna kami kung sino papasok – doon pa lang kami mag-start mag-scout,” said F2 Logistics head coach Ramil De Jesus.

The Cargo Movers now await the winner between Petron and Cignal.

The Tornadoes had a one-point breather in the fourth set, 14-13, when their offense suddenly went adrift. The Cargo Movers gladly pounced on the opportunity, uncorking seven unanswered points that put them in the lead for good.

F2 Logistics booked their eight overall appearance in the PSL finals. Moreover, this is their seventh consecutive trip to the Finale.

Kalei Mau flirted with a triple-double, tallying 16 points — built on 14 attacks, a block and an ace — 12 excellent digs and eight excellent receptions.

F2 Logistics skipper Aby Maraño had 13 markers off nine attacks, three rejections, and an ace. Ara Galang managed nine points, while Majoy Baron chipped seven, two of which coming from denials.

Kim Fajardo tossed out 24 excellent sets on top of two markers. Dawn Macandili netted 30 excellent digs.

Though the Cargo Movers wrapped up the first two sets in convincing fashion, they had to weather a momentum surge from the Tornadoes, who picked up steam in the face of a 0-2 set deficit.

“Yun nga yung problema sa amin. ‘Pag ahead ng two sets, pagdating ng third set, laging slow start. Kaya pina-remind ko lang sila na yung galaw natin, dapat hindi dedepende, sasabay sa kalaban,” De Jesus said.

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The Tornadoes had their backs against the wall entering the third set. They then unleashed a balanced attack, pulling solid contributions from the quartet of Jaja Santiago, Dindin Santiago-Manabat, Eya Laure, and Shaya Adorador. Foton mounted a comfortable cushion at 23-15 — a lead that gave them a lease on life.

Santiago poured in a game-high 20 points that went down the drain. She also had 17 attacks and three blocks.

Her sister, Santiago-Manabat, notched a double-double of 15 points and 11 excellent digs. Marian Buitre supplied 10 markers, which included three aces, while Laure contributed nine points.

Adorador had eight markers and eight excellent receptions. Ivy Perez generated 16 excellent sets laced with three points via aces. Jen Reyes manned the floor with 20 excellent digs and 11 excellent receptions.

The Tornadoes outperformed the Cargo Movers in the attacking department, 56-40, but their errors spelled doom, surrendering a total of 37 to the latter.

Game One of the Finals will be on Saturday at the SMART Araneta Coliseum. Meanwhile, Foton will prepare to salvage bronze on the same day.

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