HD Spikers return to win column

Saturday, 11 Nov 2017
Nads Ong - Correspondent - @nadineisreal
Photo courtesy of Noel Monzales, Volleyball PH

MALOLOS CITY — Cignal snapped a two-game losing slump after it survived a scare from Iriga City in straight sets, 26-24, 25-23, 25-17, in the Chooks to-Go Philippine Superliga (PSL) Grand Prix Saturday at the Malolos Sports and Convention Center here.

Local ace hitter Jovelyn Gonzaga spearheaded the assault to tow the HD Spikers to their second victory. She finished the job with 15 points on top of three digs and four receptions.

Australian reinforcement Beth Carey and Alexis Mathew of the United States chipped in 10 apiece.

Cignal head coach George Pascua said the HD Spikers, who missed the services of star spiker Rachel Anne Daquis, badly needed this victory to somehow boost their morale entering a crucial match against unbeaten F2 Logistics on Nov. 21.

“This is an overwhelming win for us because we came from two losses.”

“Hopefully we can sustain the winning character of the players. We need to overcome the pressure because we’re a champion team in the Invitationals.”

With the win, Cignal shared the fourth spot with idle Generika-Ayala with a 2-3 win-loss card.

Despite losing Grethcel Soltones to a one-year suspension, the Lady Oragons came out firing early on.

Serbian import Tamara Kmezic waxed hot at the attack zone, towing the Lady Oragons to a 21-19 lead in the crucial stretch of the first set.

But Gonzaga delivered back-to-back hits followed by an attack error by the 6-foot-7 Serbian opposite that gave the first set victory and the momentum to the HD Spikers, much to the delight of a massive weekend crowd in this historic city.

Kmezic spewed fire offensively with 22 kills while Saama Miyagawa of Japan chipped in 12 kills and a pair of aces for 14 points for the Lady Oragons, who absorbed their third consecutive setback after opening their bid with an impressive win over Sta. Lucia Realty.