Analysis: F2 Logistics cruises over Cignal

If the F2 Logistics Cargo Movers were a boxers, they would be counter-punchers. They get a feel of how their opponents play first while keeping the game close. But they deliver a crushing blow that shuts down the other team once they have made that in-game adjustment. This is how they clinched their PSL All Filipino Conference 2018 opening day victory against the Cignal HD Spikers. That is highly evident in how the opening set unfolded.

Cignal had a fighting chance until it was 16-15 to F2’s favor. They were able to run plays for Rachel Ann Daquis, Mylene Paat, and Honey Royse Tubino but their attackers were mainly doing cross court attacks. Then the F2 onslaught happened. The HD Spikers wouldn’t have scored another point in the set if not for Kim Kianna Dy’s service error.

The Cargo Movers did an excellent job in establishing their defensive positions because they have anticipated what was coming. That’s why the likes of Dawn Macandili and Ara Galang were able to neutralize Cignal’s attack that has been running well early in the set. Their saves contributed to the 51 total excellent digs that F2 had out of 107 attempts. Compare that to the HD Spikers’ 40 out of 108 tries.

Coach Ramil De Jesus also changed his point of attack. F2 was scoring mainly from the opposite spiker position in the early goings. But during their 9-1 run to close the set, they shifted the main point of their offense from the open spiker position with team captain Cha Cruz-Behag and the middle with Majoy Baron. That ability to adjust their plan in-game is what makes F2 Logistics a formidable foe. They will figure out another way to beat you just when teams think that they have gagged their offense.

Aggressive service game for F2

The Cargo Movers intensified their service game when Tubino and Daquis were starting to build a rhythm. As a result, they targeted these two players with their serves to neutralize their scoring. The plan worked as F2 got three aces in the first set which contributed Cignal’s eight errors. When they were not scoring aces, their serves made it challenging for the HD Spikers to pass the ball from reception which limited their chances to score.

In total, F2 tallied eight service aces in three sets which figures largely to the 25 errors that the players of Coach Edgar Barroga committed. That’s one set worth of points from mistakes alone. In contrast, the Cargo Movers only had 12 errors the entire game. Likewise, the Cargo Movers utilized their service game to ultimately pull away from the HD Spikers in the second set.

Woes for Cignal

The HD Spikers were able to execute their middle game with Tubino. That was then neutralized especially when Cignal attempted a number of back row attacks that did not clear the net. On the defensive end, they had trouble covering Zone 4 which F2 exploited with cut shots. There were instances when Daquis chased ball going to Jheck Dionela’s direction because of her tentative positioning. Teams will continue to find that zone if Coach Barroga does not address this concern.

Balanced scoring for Cargo Movers

F2’s barrage was coming from different areas that their scoring totals are roughly even. Baron scored 11 mainly from the middle while Dy had the same number of points from Zone 2. Cruz-Behag led the team with 12 points, nine of which from spikes. Aby Marano had eight courtesy mostly of her sliding attacks while Galang had seven markers. That distribution makes it difficult to map out a defensive game plan against the Cargo Movers for they can hurt opponents in several ways.

Battle of the liberos

Macandili and Dionela both held their own in this game, its just that F2 had more firepower than Cignal. Both liberos had 29 dig attempts each but Macandili had the edge in conversions, 20-17. Dionela had more receptions though with 12 in 32 tries. On the other hand, Macandili had two less receptions but only needed 15 attempts to do so. These two gems will set the defensive tone for their respective teams. However, Dionela’s teammates must improve on giving her more space to operate.