The Philippine Women’s National Volleyball team bucked the absence of some of its key players as it raised the curtains to the 2019 PSL Super Cup on a high note, Tuesday evening.
Despite the absence of Alyssa Valdez and Jia Morado, the Nationals orchestrated a straight-set rout of Team Shine, 25-14, 25-18, 25-16, at the FilOil Flying V Centre.
“Siyempre, thank you kay Lord sa strength na binigay sa team namin. At the same time, na-feel ng players namin kung paano maglaro ulit dito sa Pilipinas,” National team head coach Shaq Delos Santos said.
The Philippine delegates got off to a strong start behind their precise execution at the net, churning out a lopsided affair early on. However, the league selection team established its footing in the second frame.
Figuring in a back and forth swing, the tricolor squad cradled a slim 19-18 edge. But MJ Philips muffed a service attempt, triggering a downward spiral for Shine. Roselyn Doria and Aiza Maizo-Pontillas then joined hands, as the two national team reserves dealt the crucial blows that gave their team a two-set buffer.
The tides then turned in favor of the Nationals. They mounted a 10-point cushion in the second technical timeout, before doubling on Shine with an 18-9 advantage and never looking back.
Mylene Paat spearheaded her team’s balanced offensive assault with eight points, with a pair from blocks. Ces Molina and Majoy Baron supplied seven markers with the latter netting two aces. Eya Laure and Jovelyn Gonzaga then chimed in six points each.
Maddie Madayag and skipper Aby Maraño contributed five apiece.
Battle-tested playmaker Rhea Dimaculangan tossed 13 excellent sets for the Nationals, who outgunned the opposition with a 42-27 differential in attacks.
“Syempre kung ano man yung nabigay namin kanina, gusto pa namin madagdagan ‘yun, ma-improve pa namin nang ma-improve kasi siyempre may gusto pa rin kaming gawin para sa team namin,” Delos Santos added.
MJ Phillips led her side with eight points. Generika-Ayala’s Patty Orendain and Mean Mendrez managed four markers each.
The Philippine contingents seek to sustain their momentum when they take on Team Sparkle. Meanwhile, Shine looks to crack into the win column against the visiting team, University of Tsukuba. Both matches will be played on November 7, Thursday, at the same venue.
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