Foton shoots for crown
For Lindsay Stalzer, that cliffhanger in Game 1 where Foton dropped the first two sets was all on them.
“I don’t think Petron did anything,” said Stalzer after the Tri-Activ went on a two-sets-to-none advantage Thursday night. “I think we put ourselves in that situation. We missed a lot of serves and were having messy plays.
“We were not converting and not hitting the ball very hard. But everyone’s reminding one another to keep our heads up and Ariel (Usher) is very good at giving motivational speeches.”
The deficit, however, only served the Tornadoes the opportunity to mount an epic comeback and steal the victory, 20-25, 21-25, 25-22, 25-17, 15-9.
Foton thus moved a win closer to the Philippine Superliga Grand Prix title.
Stalzer added: “And that’s part of our team, we know we can count on each other when we’re down.”
While Foton goes for the kill, Petron finds itself in an earnest battle as it takes another shot at the Tornadoes in Game 2 at 5 p.m. at Philsports Arena.
Another win would give Foton its second title in the league and cement its reputation as a league heavyweight.
The 32-year-old Stalzer, who also engineered Foton’s Grand Prix triumph last year, admitted that she was nervous going into the game.
“I don’t know why because I know we are a good team,” she said. “But it’s a great game and all of us are giving all we’ve got. The level just got higher and higher and so everyone’s playing harder and harder for every point.”
Meanwhile, Petron filed a protest over officiating in Thursday’s Game 1.
League officials refused to give any details but they returned to the office Thursday night to accept the protest and were deliberating on it the whole of yesterday.
The bone of contention was the supposed touch ball on a Foton defender off a Ces Molina attack with Petron holding an
8-6 lead in the fifth set.
“I think that was the turning point because if the video challenge was successful it would have been 9-6 instead of 8-7,” said Petron coach Shaq Delos Santos.
From there, it went downhill for the Tri-Activ spikers, who were looking very good after winning the first two sets over the Tornadoes.
“I hope they decide well because that started our collapse that’s why we filed a complaint,” he added.
That put in question the accuracy of the multimillion-peso video challenge system which was supposed to conclusively decide on sketchy calls.
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