Petron hammered F2 Logistics on both ends to pull off an impressive 25-23, 25-21, 25-19 victory in Game 1 of their Philippine Superliga (PSL) All-Filipino Conference best-of-three finals late last night at the Muntinlupa Sports Centre.
Frances Molina led the charge for the Blaze Spikers, who had a well-balanced attack to draw the first blood in this prestigious club tourney bankrolled by Belo, Rebisco and Gold’s Gym with TV5 as official broadcast partner.
Molina nailed nine of Petron’s 37 attack points to finish with 11 points while Bernadeth Pons and Aiza Maizo-Pontillas had eight markers apiece.
“It was our heart which carried us in this game,” said Petron coach Shaq Delos Santos. “We’re already in the championship match. It’s no longer a question of skills or talent; it’s now a question of willingness and desire. Whoever wants it more would definitely win.”
Delos Santos added that winning the crown is not a walk in the park as he expects a furious fight back from the Cargo Movers when Game 2 erupts tomorrow at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan.
“Knowing F2 (Logistics), they will surely bounce back.”
Meanwhile, Cignal used its vast experience to its advantage to register a masterful 25-16, 25-18, 20-25, 25-22 conquest of Foton and formally cop the bronze medal.
National team member Jovelyn Gonzaga knocked down 13 kills and two aces for 15 points while Maica Morada had 12 and Rachel Anne Daquis had 10 for the HD Spikers who lorded it over in the block department (11-5) and service category (10-8)
Honey Royse Tubino, former University of Perpetual Help star, knocked down 12 kills for 17 points to spearhead Cignal at the attack zone.
On the other hand, Jaja Santiago nailed 21 points while Laure had 12 markers for Foton, which settled for a fourth-place finish after ruling the Grand Prix for two consecutive years.
“I’m glad that we finished the tournament with a victory,” said Cignal coach George Pascua following the match that also has Senoh, Mikasa, Mueller, Asics and Grand Sport as technical sponsors.
“I told my players to forget what happened in the semis and move on with a victory. We may have not won the title, but it’s good that we achieved our mission of coming up with a podium finish.”
Finals Game 2
Thursday July 13
6pm Petron vs F2 Logistics
If F2 Logistics wins, game 3 will be on July 15, Saturday. Venue and time to be announced.