Cvijovic boosts Crossovers past Chargers
Jelena Cvijovic continued improving offensively and Chery Tiggo can start looking forward to even better things after completing a comeback to remember on Thursday.
Cvijovic dominated in the fifth set and led the Crossovers to a come-from-behind 23-25, 25-21, 21-25, 25-21, 15-6 victory over Akari to give them the early lead anew in the Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference eliminations at PhilSports Arena.
Held to a combined 18 points in the first two Chery Tiggo wins, Cvijovic scattered 16, with four of those coming in a 6-1 start in the decider that eventually boosted the Crossovers to a third straight win.
“Jelena exerts effort and keeps asking us what she needs to do to help the team,” Chery coach Clarence Esteban said in Filipino. “She really wants to make up for her previous games. I keep on reminding her to just push through the things she does.”
Cza Carandang also helped Chery Tiggo overcome a sluggish start with 18 points, with EJ Laure contributing 14 points and 12 digs as the Crossovers made do without Dindin Santiago-Manabat.
“We really had a slow start,” Esteban said. “But I told them we can still get the win as long as we execute.”
The scrambling, confidence-boosting win certainly can give the Crossovers the momentum they need going into an awaited clash with crowd-darling Choco Mucho on Tuesday.
The Crossovers never wavered even after dropping the third set for a 1-2 deficit. They took full control over the Power Chargers in the fourth and led by as many as eight, 23-15. But Chery Tiggo allowed Akari to save five set points with import Prisilla Rivera scoring three straight followed by Krich Macaslang’s ace and Mylene Paat’s attack error.
Rivera, a three-time Olympian, once again showed the way for Akari, nailing 29 kills for 30 points. Janine Marciano displayed an all-around game with 24 points, 18 digs and 14 excellent receptions.
The Power Chargers slid to a 1-2 record and will be facing the Petro Gazz Angels (1-1) on Saturday at Sta. Rosa Sports Complex in Laguna.
In the second game, Des Cheng came through with the game-winning block as Choco Mucho made it a night of rallying five-setters with a 25-27, 25-22, 18-25, 25-22, 17-15 victory over PLDT.
In a tense deciding set, the Flying Titans saved matchpoint with Olina Aliyeva hammering in her 30th point past a couple of blockers. PLDT’s Elena Samoilenko sent a kill wide to put Choco Mucho at matchpoint which Cheng converted with a well-timed block on Chinchin Basas.