Choco Mucho notched its second consecutive win after taking a thriller over PLDT, 25-27, 25-22, 18-25, 25-22, 17-15, in the 2022 Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference, Thursday at Philsports Arena in Pasig.
A block by Elena Samoilenka and a quick kill by Jessey De Leon put the High Speed Hitters at match point, 15-14.
But Odina Aliyeva drilled an off-the-block hit, Samoilenko’s attack went wide, and Des Cheng rejected Chin Basas to give the Flying Titans the victory.
“We reiterated teamwork. I told my players na small role or big role what’s important is they deliver. Small things adding up will make it a big thing,” said Choco Mucho coach Oliver Almadro.
“When we went to the fifth set, I just told my players put up the intensity, pairalin ‘yung teamwork and sabi ko sa kanila if you want it, believe that you will get it.”
The High Speed Hitters took the extended first salvo after Mika Reyes and Basas nailed a drop shot and a block, respectively, 27-25, before the Flying Titans answered back in the second to level the match at one set apiece.
Already ahead by four in the third, 13-17, Samoilenko and Fiola Ceballos unleashed two hits apiece to pull away and give PLDT the 2-1 set lead.
But Aliyeva willed Choco Mucho back to the match with an inspired fourth period to stretch it to a fifth and final set.
The Uzbek-Azerbaijani import delivered 30 big points to go with 26 excellent receptions and 10 digs.
Kat Tolentino followed with 16 points, while Cherry Nunag had nine points.
The Flying Titans improved to 2-1 at third while the High Speed Hitters fell to a three-way logjam with Akari and F2 Logistics with identical 1-2 slates.
Samoilenko’s 35 points went for naught as well as Reyes and Ceballos’ 14 points each. Kath Arado also produced 23 digs and 16 excellent receptions.
Both squads will be back in action on Tuesday at the same Pasig venue.
Choco Mucho will face 3-0 Chery Tiggo, while PLDT will break its tie with the Cargo Movers at 5:30 pm.