Even without head coach Roger Gorayeb, San Sebastian College – Recoletos carved out a morale-boosting, breakthrough victory in the 2019 PVL Collegiate Conference, Saturday.
The Lady Stags turned back Colegio de San Juan de Letran Lady Knights, 20-25, 25-22, 27-25, 26-24, at the FilOil Flying V Centre.
“Sobrang boost ng morale sa amin. Sabi ko, isipin niyo nalang lahat ng ginawa niyo last week, eto na ‘yun, dito niyo ilabas, pakita natin na kaya natin na walang pressure lalo na wala si Coach,” said assistant coach Jewelle Bermillo.
“‘Yun nalang din ang ibabalik namin kay Coach na kahit wala siya dito, kaya namin maglaro ng maayos,” added Bermillo as she called the shots for San Sebastian in lieu of Gorayeb, who mourned the death of his pet dog.
Following a squeaker in the third set for a 2-1 set advantage, the Lady Stags staged an early stampede in the fourth frame, sprinting to an 8-3 cushion. However, the Lady Knights quelled San Sebastian as they crossed the second technical timeout with a one-point edge.
Both teams then traded blows, leading up to a 22-all lock. Reyann Cañete hammered down the tiebreaker before Letran committed an error to put San Sebastian at match point. Though the Lady Stags seemed to have the match in hand, the Lady Knights mustered a fightback that forged a deuce.
From there, Cañete nailed the differential hit yet again before piercing through Letran’s wall in the ensuing play to buoy San Sebastian to its first win in four matches.
Cañete finished with 12 points on top of 14 excellent digs. Meanwhile, Bianca Ordona top-billed with 14 markers, all but a point coming from attacks.
Shane Requierme and Kamille Tan were also positive factors in the 112-minute match. The former had 13 points while the latter netted two kill blocks for 10 markers.
San Sebastian playmaker Alex Sison dished out 22 excellent sets for the Lady Stags, who rained down 50 attacks. Catherine Lim protected the floor with a 20-reception, 17-dig performance.
On the other hand, the Lady Knights fell out of the semifinals race as they dropped to a 1-3 card.
Charm Simborio topped Letran with 13 points. Kath Dela Cruz chimed in 12 markers — spiked by four blocks. She also collected nine excellent digs and nine excellent receptions. Meanwhile, Chamberlaigne Cunada added 10 points.
San Sebastian look to build from this win as they try to end their campaign on a high note against San Beda. Meanwhile, Letran will also seek for a positive closer to their campaign when they take on Adamson. Both games are slated on Saturday, September 14 at the same venue.