PGJC-Navy’s only loss so far in the 2022 Spikers’ Turf Open Conference came from collegiate squad National University-Sta. Elena last September 6.
Since then, the Sealions racked up wins after wins with their streak currently at five games, including a victory over Cignal – the defending champion’s first loss since 2019.
And on Saturday, the second playdate of the men’s premier league semifinals round, PGJC-Navy will meet its lone tormentor again: the Nationals.
The Sealions folded in five sets last September 6, their second game in the league. But they were very different from the Sealions who will play come Saturday.
“Noong nagstart kasi kami ng laro dito hanggang sa NU-Sta. Elena hindi pa kami blended, wala pa kaming teamwork,” said PGJC-Navy head coach Cecille Cruzada.
“Habang tumatagal, habang naglalaro kami nang patagal nang patagal nagkakaroon sila ng teamwork at synchronization.”
The Sealions, of course, have Jao Umandal as its poster boy but multiple players have stepped up during their winning streak.
There’s captain Greg Dolor, who punched in 20 points against VNS-One Alicia on Thursday to open the semis 1-0.
Joeven Dela Vega incurred an injury on September 8 against Army-Katinko and after that, Christian Marcelino filled the hole.
Against the Griffins, middle blocker Ronniel Rosales hurt his left ankle early in the first set. That prompted Cruzada to call the number of Jemmy Entig, who then produced nine points.
“Si Entig malaking tulong din kanina kasi gumana siya, isa siya sa mga nagpagana sa team nila. So masaya ako para kay Entig kasi nag-step up siya,” said the lone woman bench tactician in the league organized by Sports Vision.
And against NU-Sta. Elena, PGJC-Navy might be back in full strength. Dela Vega played almost two sets against VNS-One Alicia and tallied six points with his hops back like he was never gone.
Bounce-back is what’s the Sealions aiming for and is laser-focused on it.
“Si Joeven kasi malaking bagay talaga sa amin. Tinanong namin siya kung kaya niya na ba, although medyo maga pa siya. Pero sabi niya kaya na, so tinry namin siya,” said Cruzada. “Pinatunayan niya na kaya na niya, so siguro by Saturday ibabalik na namin siya.
“This time siguro sa Sabado pag-iigihan namin ‘yung ensayo bukas, ‘yung blocking nila, saan kami papatay… Lahat gagawin namin para makabawi.”