Petron may be playing near-flawless volleyball lately, prompting it to emerge on top of the Philippine Superliga (PSL) All-Filipino Conference.
But for head coach Shaq Delos Santos, their form is still far from perfect.
Delos Santos said they have yet to display their full strength as they are still groping for form following a massive revamp in the off-season.
Aside from national team skipper Mika Reyes, the Blaze Spikers also added Rhea Dimaculangan, Sisi Rondina, Bernadeth Pons, Remy Palma, Ria Duremdes, Ria Meneses, Toni Rose Basas and Carmela Tunay to complete what appears to be a UAAP All-Star squad.
Mainstays Carmina Aganon, Aiza Maizo-Pontillas, Ces Molina and Bang Pineda and April Ross Hingpit are also still there to sustain the intensity and hunger brought by their failure to land the Grand Prix title last year.
In their previous match against Generika-Ayala, Petron suffered a second-set meltdown, prompting them to work hard in the third and fourth sets to eke out a four-set victory.
Delos Santos said what Petron showed was just a trace of its fiery self.
[quote]“From a scale of one to 10, I think we’re around six or seven.”[/quote]
[quote]“As you can see, most of our players are new and we’re still adjusting. I think we still have something to show.”[/quote]
Petron will be marching back to the warzone on Thursday against Cignal – a squad the crushed them in the first round.
The victor will not only solidify its grip on the second spot, but will also give it a golden opportunity to have a lighter foe in the crossover quarterfinal encounter.
Delos Santos knows that it’s easier said than done.
[quote]“This will be tougher from here.”[/quote]
[quote]“We have to work hard because everybody is looking to have a good position in the quarterfinals. We expect everybody to play hard and give us a tough time”[/quote]
Delos Santos, however, reiterated that Petron’s tank is not yet full in this race for the All-Filipino crown.
And that what makes this team very scary.