A solid, more fluid Foton squad showed up and made quick work of struggling RC Cola-Air Force, 25-14, 25-13, 26-16, in the 2015 Philippine Superliga (PSL) Grand Prix women’s volleyball tournament yesterday at The Arena in San Juan.
Drawing strength from their powerful frontcourt attackers, the Tornadoes played like a well-oiled machine as they also took advantage of the Raiders’ sloppy defense and reception to complete the conquest in this prestigious inter-club tourney presented by Asics and backed by Milo with Mikasa, Senoh and Mueller as technical partners and TV 5 as official broadcaster.
American reinforcement Lindsay Stalzer led the scoring parade with 13 kills for a total of 15 points while Jaja Santiago finally re-discovered her deadly form as she finished with nine hits, three aces and two blocks to finish with 14 points.
Foton also emerged more superior in the blocking, service and spiking departments, a testament of its eagerness to turn things around as the league enters its second round of eliminations. They also capitalized on RC Cola-Air Force’s 23 turnovers.
“We already learned from our previous mistakes,” said assistant coach Ian Fernandez, who took over the helm from head coach Villet Ponce-de Leon who was out to attend a pressing matter.
“That’s why we had a meeting and we decided that there should be more consistency and quality in our plays. Medyo pangit ang past two games namin. That’s why we all agreed that it’s about time for us to get our acts together and make a statement game.”
With the win, Foton is now in solo fourth with a 2-3 win-loss card. On the other hand, RC Cola-Air Force closed its first round campaign with 1-4, just one game ahead of struggling Meralco, which has yet to barge into the win column in five games.
“It’s still a very long way to go,” Fernandez added. “May second round pa. We have to start winning now if we want to go far.”
With Stalzer waxing hot and her counterpart in Puerto Rican Lynda Morales suddenly blowing cold, the Tornadoes dominated the game early on to carve out the most lopsided match of the conference.
Morales, an active member of the Puerto Rican national team had a lackluster performance finishing with only six kills for a total of nine points while Sara McClinton and Maika Ortiz had seven points apiece for the Raiders, who are obviously struggling to get back in shape after attending basic military training in the Air Force last month.
Click for a photo set on Facebook by Albert Ray Alejandro
Click for match results
October 29 Thursday at the San Juan Arena. Both games are livestreamed and replayed on sports5.ph
4:15 pm Foton vs Cignal (Live on TV5 and AksyonTV)
6:15 pm RC Cola-Air Force vs Petron (9pm on AksyonTV)
Ticket is only P100 good for both games! Buy at the gate or via smtickets.com
Photo credit to Albert Ray Alejandro