Army leads crack field in Shakey’s V-L OpenBy Cedelf P. Tupas |Philippine Daily Inquirer
Some of the finest players that the past decade has seen in the Shakey’s V-League will be in the limelight anew in the Open Conference starting Aug. 18 at Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan.
Philippine Army headlines a formidable field with a star-studded roster that includes Nene Bautista, MJ Balse, Michelle Carolino and Rachel Anne Daquis, who bagged Finals Most Valuable Player honors when the Lady Troopers captured the title two years ago.
Easily the team to beat, Army also has veterans in Patricia SIatan-Torres, Genie Sabas, Joanne Buñag, Marietta Carolino, Jacqueline Alarca, Cristina Salak, Jovelyn Gonzaga, Dahlia Cruz, Angela Nuñag and Ma. Therea Iratay.
Smart-Maynilad is expected to give Army a run for the title won last year by Sandugo, while Cagayan Province and Meralco all loom as darkhorses in the season-ending tournament.
Air Force, Navy, Philippine National Police and Far Eastern U are also hoping to make their presence felt in the tournament.
Previous finals MVPs will also be in action, including Maureen Penetrante-Ouano (Meralco), Rhea Dimaculangan (Air Force), Ferrer and De los Santos.
Smart will have a squad powered by current and former Ateneo stars in Alyssa Valdez, Sue Roces and Charo Soriano, who are joining forces with University of Santo Tomas’ Maru Banaticla and La Salle ace libero Melissa Gohing.
Cagayan Province, which finished runner-up last year, hopes for a triumphant ending this time with a team built around UST aces Aiza Maizo and Angeli Tabaquero
Penetrante-Ouano will be at the forefront of Meralco’s bid.