The Philippine Navy Sailors completed the semifinals roster in the Spikers Turf Season One Reinforced conference, defeating the IEM Phoenix Volley Masters 28-30, 25-19, 28-26, 14-25, 15-12 at the FilOil Flying V Arena, late Saturday afternoon.
Michael Zamora and Eden Canlas led the IEM offense in the first set, as the Sailors struggled to respond to the Volley Masters’ hot start. In the second set, Nur Amin Madsari and Wilbert Sapida powered the Sailors to an 18-13 lead. IEM were unable to control their errors and had to play catch-up throughout the set
Both teams exchanged attacks and errors, resulting in several deadlocks in the third set. Canlas scored down the line to tie things at 25, but Zamora committed a service error to give Navy a 26-25 lead. Canlas then scored again for 26-all deadlock. Madsari and Wilbert Sapida provided clutch plays in crucial moments to salvage the set for the Sailors.
IEM quickly responded in the following set with a 20-12 lead through timely attacks from Canlas, Zamora, and Rudy Gatdula. As a result, the Sailors were never able to establish themselves in the game. In the deciding set, Jeffrey Jimenez, Gatdula, and Canlas quickly blasted the Sailors to an 8-6 lead. Madsari then led the Navy response, scoring two crucial blocks that put Navy in the driver’s seat at 13-11. Canlas scored to trim the lead to one, 13-12, but Razzel Palisoc and Madsari settled it, scoring the last two points of the Sailors.
“Mag focus lang sila sa laro,” said Navy Head Coach Rene Gaspillo regarding the win, achieved after his team had gone on a three-game losing skid. The Sailors have booked the last place in the semi-finals.
Madsari finished with 21 points to lead Navy while Palisoc and Edgardo Rusit chipped 16 and 10 points apiece. Setter John Paul Junio tossed 16 excellent sets.
Zamora unloaded 25 points for IEM with Canlas chipped 16 markers along with nine digs. Setter Renz Ordonez made 30 tosses.
The Sailors finish the elimination round with 2-3 win-loss card and enter the semifinals round as the number four seed. The Phoenix Volley Masters ended their Spikers Turf campaign at 1-4 win-loss record.
The Sailors will face the top-seeded Philippine Air Force Air Spikers at 3:00 PM, while the Cignal HD Spikers and PLDT Home Ultera Ultra Fast Hitters will tangle in the another semifinals clash at 1:00 PM, both on November 15. The Air Spikers and HD Spikers both hold a twice-to-beat advantage against their opponents.
PHI Navy(3)- Madsari 21, Palisoc 16, Rusit 10, Sapida 8, Senisan 5, Cacayuran 2, Junio 1, Kasim 1, Ajon 0, Tipay (L)
IEM(2)- Zamora 25, Canlas 16, Jimenez 10, Gatdula 10, Conde 8, Timbal 7, Tonquin 3, Ordonez 2, Cerilles 0, Salcedo 0, Almario (L)