PLDT, Army destroy foes
PLDT Home Ultera hit the ground running and swamped Philippine Coast Guard, 25-10, 25-11, 25-20, Sunday at the start of its campaign in the Shakey’s V-League Reinforced Conference at Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan.
Dealing with little resistance, the Ultra Fast Hitters never felt threatened in the one-hour, 15-minute tussle.
PLDT lapsed into a couple of errors early in the third set but managed to regroup just as quick to overcome an 8-7 deficit and pull in front for good behind Janine Marciano, Laurence Ann Latigay and Aiza Maizo-Pontillas.
Pontillas squished any hope of a Coast Guard revival with a kill off a block in the final sequence.
“We’re not yet complete as a team, but it’s a good start,” said PLDT head coach Roger Gorayeb.
Power hitters Alyssa Valdez and Gretchel Soltones have not reported for duty yet due to school commitments.
Valdez, the MVP in the recent Collegiate Conference, is playing for Ateneo in the UAAP beach volley tournament while Soltones is concentrating on her classes at San Sebastian.
Philippine Army also started on the right foot and made short work of KIA, 25-15, 25-18, 25-11, in the other game.
Jovelyn Gonzaga had eight attacks, a pair of blocks and two service aces while Cristina Salak registered 19 excellent sets for the Lady Troopers, who are blessed with a deep pool of veterans in Michelle Carolino, Mary Jean Balse-Pabayo, Aby Maraño and Honey Royse Tubino.
Ably filling the void for the Ultra Fast Hitters were Marciano, who had nine hits and three service aces, and Latigay who delivered 12 points. Pontillas added seven points, plus two aces.
“Aiza was hurting and didn’t play for a long time after that three-month absence,” said Gorayeb.
Rossan Fajardo carried the fight for the Dolphins with 10 points while Mary Cristel Rosale contributed seven.