Spikers' Turf: VNS holds off Sta. Rosa for second straight win | Inquirer Sports

Spikers’ Turf: VNS holds off Sta. Rosa for second straight win

/ 08:49 PM September 03, 2022

VNS Spikers' Turf


MANILA, Philippines — VNS-One Alicia climbed back from a 1-2 set deficit to survive the young but gritty Sta. Rosa side, 25-23, 21-25, 22-25, 30-28, 15-13, and claim its second straight win in the 2022 Spikers’ Turf Open Conference on Saturday at Paco Arena.

Ben San Andres fired 24 points to propel the Griffins’ comeback while Yoyong Mendoza nailed the clutch attacks to avoid an upset from the Lions, composed of high schoolers who will play in the Asean School Games, after a grueling two-hour and 30-minute match with both squads combining for 86 errors.


VNS, which lost national team middle blocker Kim Malabunga in the third set due to a minor ankle sprain, refused to lose in the fourth set, erasing a 10-16 disadvantage and getting lucky thanks to crucial errors by Sta. Rosa to force a decider, where the former trailed 6-9.


San Andres stopped the bleeding for the Griffins in the fifth, followed by back-to-back errors from their young foes to take their first lead in the set, 10-9. VNS committed errors allowing Sta. Rosa to tie the frame thrice with, 12-all. 

Mendoza brought back VNS on top, followed by an attack error from Jade Disquitado to reach match point, 14-12. Chris Hernandez saved a point but Mendoza delivered the match-winning kill.

“I’m happy because we found our groove and worked well together in the fourth and fifth set,” said Mendoza in Filipino after finishing with 12 points.

VNS joined Cignal on top with identical 2-0 records as San Andres finished with 21 attacks, two blocks, and an ace and had 12 excellent receptions. Setter Ish Polvorosa made 12 excellent sets, while  Chris Doria and Kevin Montemayor added nine and eight markers, respectively.

Griffins coach Ralph Ocampo admitted his wards played relaxed in the first three sets, failing to receive and block against the hard fighting under 18 team of Sta. Rosa.

“We didn’t find our groove in the first three sets. I told my players that our opponents are strong, and we cannot play relaxed. We need to loosen up because we can’t receive and block. Good thing we addressed it in the last two sets,” Ocampo said in Filipino.


The Lions dropped to 0-2 after giving up 45 miscues and committing 23 service errors in the match.

Disquitado paced Sta. Rosa with 25 points off 23 kills and two blocks. Gabby Hernandez had 17 points built on 13 attacks, three aces, and a block while also providing 18 excellent receptions and nine digs, while setter Mark Baldos had 34 excellent sets. Sean Labrador and Chris Hernandez added nine markers each.


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TAGS: spikers’ turf, VNS Manileño Spikers

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