More PVL teams unveil seasoned imports for Reinforced Conference
MANILA, Philippines — Akari, Choco Mucho, PLDT, and United Auctioneers-Army have unveiled their respective imports for the 2022 Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference, which opens on October 8.
Akari, the newest PVL Team, on Wednesday welcomed former Dominican Republic national team player Prisilla Rivera as its import for its professional volleyball league debut.
The 37-year-old Rivera is bringing an impressive resume in leading a young Filipino club team as she played for the Dominican Republic national squad from 2001 to 2021 and won 12 gold medals. She won a total of 13 MVPs and 17 championships from club leagues in her home country, Spain, Puerto Rico, Azerbaijan, Turkey, Brazil, Italy, Hungary, and her latest stint in Indonesia with Jakarta Pertamina Energi early this year.
The 6-foot-1 spiker, who is also a three-time Olympian, is set to share her experience with the Power Chargers, bannered by Michelle Cobb, Trisha Genesis, Erika Raagas, Lycha Ebon, and Dani Ravena, under Brazilian head coach Jorge Souza de Brito.
Meanwhile, PLDT introduced Russian outside spiker Elina Savkina-Samoilenko as its import, while Canadian spiker Laura Condotta arrived in the country on Tuesday as she reinforces Army, which will have United Auctioneers as its sponsor.
Savkina-Samoilenko, a 6-foot-4 spiker, played volleyball club leagues in Russia with Luch Moscow and Proton-Saratov and in France with Le Cannet and Municipal Olympique Mougins. She recently played for Mersin B.Şehir Bld. in Turkey before joining the High Speed Hitters, led by Rhea Dimaculangan, Mika Reyes, and Dell Palomata, seeking to surpass their previous fourth-place finish in the Invitational Conference.
The Lady Troopers tapped Brock University standout Condotta, who also represented the Canadian national team in local and international beach volleyball tournaments. The 25-year-old played for Raiffeisen Volley Toggenburg in Switzerland and for AEK Larnaca in Cyprus.
Condotta is expected to form a potent combo with Army star Jovelyn Gonzaga in the team’s bid to reach the podium after settling for fifth place in the previous conference.
Choco Mucho has yet to announce its import, but Uzbek-Azerbaijani outside hitter Odina Aliyeva has been posting Instagram stories, training with the Flying Titans ahead of the season-ending conference, which is returning after three years.
On Wednesday, the 32-year-old Azerbaijan national team member posted an Instagram story with Des Cheng, Regine Arocha, and Ponggay Gaston at a gym in Baguio City.
The Flying Titans, who settled for back-to-back fourth place finishes in the past two Open Conferences before missing the semis round of the Invitationals, are hoping that Aliyeva could be the missing piece to overcome the hump as she brings her experience from several global leagues in her home country, Italy, Turkey, Indonesia, United States, and Brazil.
The 6-foot-1 spiker, who last played for Jakarta Elektrik in Indonesia, is teaming up with Kat Tolentino, Bea De Leon, setter Deanna Wong, and libero Denden Lazaro-Revilla.
Creamline, the winner of the first two conferences this season, and Chery Tiggo have yet to reveal their imports. The tournament’s defending champion Petro Gazz tapped Lindsey Vander Weide, Cignal signed Tai Bierria, while F2 Logistics welcomed back Lindsay Stalzer.
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