Sandugo, Cagayan Valley try to forge V-League title duelBy Jasmine W. Payo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines—Sandugo-San Sebastian and Cagayan Valley try to sweep their respective semifinal foes Friday and arrange a championship showdown in the Shakey’s V-League Open at Ninoy Aquino Stadium.
The Lady Stags try to repeat over the Ateneo Lady Eagles at 4 p.m., while the Rising Suns have the same goal against the Philippine Army Lady Troopers at 6 p.m. in Game 2 of the best-of-three series.
“We hope to win again but we have to keep our form or try to raise the level of our game,” said Cagayan coach Mike Rafael after his Rising Suns stunned the defending champion Lady Troopers in straight sets, 25-20, 25-15, 25-20, in Game 1 last Wednesday.
The Lady Stags also moved within a win of a finals stint after blasting the depleted Lady Eagles, 25-13, 25-20, 25-9, in the other pairing Wednesday night.
“We were expected to win,” said Sandugo coach Roger Gorayeb after his Lady Stags overwhelmed an Ateneo side that played minus several players, including key cogs Fille Cainglet and Gretchen Ho, due to school commitments.
Jeng Bualee fired 18 points, while fellow Thai ace Utaiwan Kaensing and Nene Bautista teamed up for 21 for the top-seeded Lady Stags.
Thai standout Kunbang Pornpimol also starred for the Rising Suns with 18 points, but the locals led by Sandra delos Santos, Honey Tubino and Joy Cases also provided ample support.
“It would be nice to get into the finals,” said Rafael after his Rising Suns dealt the Lady Troopers their first straight-set loss of the season.
The Lady Troopers, though, hope to recover from the shock loss behind Rachel Ann Daquis, Jacqueline Alarca, Joanne Bunag, sisters Michelle and Mayeth Carolino and skipper Cristina Salak.