Petro Gazz kept its semifinals hope alive after getting a much-needed win over the also-ran Akari in four sets, 25-18, 17-25, 25-22, 32-30, in the Premier Volleyball League Second All-FIlipino Conference, Saturday at the Philsports Arena.
A loss away from getting eliminated, the Angels managed to secure the victory after fending off a spirited fightback by the Dindin Santiago-led Chargers in the fourth set.
Petro Gazz moves to solo fifth with a 6-4 standing.
“First, very thankful kami kasi nanalo kami sa game. Kita naman may mga times na lopsided yung sets but yung last two sets, grabe yung palitan ng bola,” said Petro Gazz head coach Timmy Sto. Tomas.
“Sobrang hahaba ng rally. So we were very lucky na nakapitan namin yung last two sets na yun. Very happy din na gumalaw nang maayos yung girls today,” added the Ateneo men’s volleyball head coach.
The Angels were actually on the verge of bagging the victory after Erika Raagas committed back-to-back costly errors which put them up, 24-19 in the fourth frame.
However, Santiago-Manabat pumped life into the Chargers and fired three consecutive points in a massive 6-0 blast that turned the game around and kept Akari in the game.
Petro Gazz reached match point anew after an attack error from Santiago-Manabat and an Aiza Maizo-Pontillas cross-court hit, 27-26.
However, Faith Nisperos answered with an off-the-block hit to send the game to another deuce.
Both squads traded hits from there, before Fifi Sharma’s service went straight into the net. That allowed Buitre to nail the game-clinching ace that ended the match after two hours and eight minutes of game time.
“Medyo na-gets naman nila eh, naintinidhan din nila, nakita rin nila na ganun nga yung situation. Buti nag-respond sila going to the third and fourth sets,” added Sto. Tomas.
Buitre, who played in lieu of Remy Palma, put up a personal conference-high of 22 points on 16 attacks, four blocks, and two aces in the victory that allowed the Angels to stay in the semifinals race.
Maizo-Pontillas fired 19 points to go along with 20 excellent digs while Grethcel Soltones added 18 markers on 18 attacks in the victory.
Djanel Cheng tossed 22 excellent sets while Baby Love Barbon registered 21 excellent digs and 16 excellent receptions.
Meanwhile, the Chargers, who were already kicked out of contention following Cignal’s victory over Nxled earlier today, remained at the seventh spot with a 5-5 slate.
Santiago-Manabat paced Akari with 26 points on 25 attacks and one block, while Erika Raagas and Faith Nisperos added 12 and 11 points, respectively, in the loss.
Petro Gazz will take on PLDT on December 5, 6:00 PM, while Akari will face defending champion Creamline on Thursday, 4:00 PM, both at the same arena.