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Tiebreaker Times


PVL: Des Cheng haunts F2, helps Choco Mucho secure twice-to-beat edge

The first-ever match-up between Choco Mucho and F2 Logistics did not disappoint.

In a highly intense and very emotional game, it was the Flying Titans who were able to take round one against the Cargo Movers, taking a 21-25, 28-26, 25-20, 25-22 to close out the 2022 Premier Volleyball League Open Conference, Thursday at the Paco Arena Events and Sports Center in Manila.

With the win, Choco Mucho picked up the last twice-to-beat incentive for the playoffs which begins on Monday at the Filoil Flying V Centre, joining fellow Pool A member Cignal, sister team Creamline, and fellow PVL original Petro Gazz. The Flying Titans will face PLDT on Tuesday.

Though there is much pressure on the Flying Titans heading to the game due to the hype of the contest and what was at stake, head coach Oliver Almadro made sure to remind his players to just relax and enjoy the game.

“First, ang sinasabi ko sa kanila is there’s a lot of things to be joyful for,” he said, recalling the opening set they lost and recovering in a marathon second set that lasted for 35 minutes. “Kasi, nabibigyan kami ng opportunity na kahit natalo kami ng isang set, nakabawi kami.

“We have to be joyful at maging masaya on the court. Sabi ko nga, the key to winning is loving each other and the attention to detail. Kanina, si Deanna [Wong] and Des [Cheng] nakita yung details na kailangan namin to improve on,” he continued.

After taking the third set, Choco Mucho was poised to take the game after gaining a 23-19 late. Errors though by the Flying Titans kept the Cargo Movers afloat, cutting the lead down to a solitary point.

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Cheng thought would stop the bleeding with a hit while a Shola Alvarez error sealed the win.

Wong was superb once more, tossing 44 excellent sets while scoring five points that included two aces.

Cheng got 10 points and Aduke Ogunsanya chipped in nine points on four blocks against their former team. Kat Tolentino led the way with 19 points while Ponggay Gaston added 12.

Leaving Pool B with a 3-1 record only brought the best out of Choco Mucho, said Almadro.

“Ang importante is yung mga nakalaban namin sa bracket namin ay great teams. Great teams will just push us forward. Yung F2 Logistics, Cignal, Chery, at Army, talagang matitibay sila. So, ginawa namin, kinollate lang namin yung natutunan namin in each and every game,” he said.

F2 Logistics, who ended the group stage with an even 2-2 slate will have a twice-to-beat disadvantage against Petro Gazz on Tuesday.

Kim Dy led F2 Logistics with 12 points while Aby Marano and Ara Galang both got 11.

Dawn Macandili had 44 excellent digs while Kim Fajardo tossed 24 sets.

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