ANTIPOLO – Akari bounced back from its tough loss against PLDT and defeated Chery Tiggo 25-20, 18-25, 25-22, 25-20 in the Premier Volleyball League Second All-Filipino Conference on Tuesday night at the Ynares Center here.
Veteran opposite spiker Dindin Santiago-Manabat proved to be a thorn in the side of her former team, scoring 21 points on 16 attacks, four blocks, and an ace to help the Chargers improve their record to 2-1.
Santiago-Manabat played a pivotal role in the fourth set, unleashing a scorching cross-court attack that halted the Crossovers’ comeback attempt before outsmarting two blockers with a well-placed swipe that brought them to match point.
“They are one of the strongest teams here. They have good spikers and good setters as well, but I think our strategy was really good today. Of course, the strategy is nothing without the guys performing well, and our team did their job, and I’m really proud of them,” said Akari head coach Jorge Souza de Brito.
The Chargers managed to build a six-point cushion, 22-16, after Faith Nisperos blocked Shaya Adorador late in the fourth set. However, the Crossovers put up one last fight, with Adorador and EJ Laure powering a 3-0 run that trimmed the lead to just three.
Santiago-Manabat took charge from there, delivering the cross-court attack that stopped Chery Tiggo’s run and responding to Adorador’s kill with a perfectly-placed swipe. Erika Raagas then sealed the win with a cross-court hit.
“The system or whatever you want to implement depends on the performance of the guys. The wins will come as a result if you play hard and study,” added the Brazilian coach.
Faith Nisperos supported Santiago-Manabat with 17 points, including 12 attacks and five blocks, along with 14 excellent receptions. Erika Raagas and Fifi Sharma each contributed seven points.
Jaja Maraguinot orchestrated the offense with 18 excellent sets, while Justine Jazareno recorded nine excellent digs and six excellent receptions.
Akari will face Farm Fresh on Thursday at 4:00 p.m. at the same venue.
On the other hand, Eya Laure led the Crossovers, who fell to 1-2, with 17 points, while her sister, EJ, added 14 points, 11 excellent digs, and eight excellent receptions in the loss.
Chery Tiggo will take on Gerflor on Tuesday at 2:00 p.m. at the Filoil EcoOil Centre.