Nat’ls seize solo second, survive Volley Masters

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Games Sunday
1 p.m. – Animo vs Army
3 p.m. – Navy vs VNS VC
5 p.m. – Coast Guard vs PLDT

Rebisco-Philippines bucked the absence of its two key players, a first-set setback and a gritty Instituto Estetico Manila side to hack out a tough 25-27, 25-22, 25-22, 26-24 decision and move to solo second in the Spikers’ Turf Season 4 Reinforced Conference at Paco Arena in Manila last Tuesday.

Ranran Abdilla unloaded 17 points while Kim Malabunga and Rex Intal combined for 26 markers as the troika took charge in the absence of top guns Marck Espejo and Bryan Bagunas as the Nationals survived the Volley Masters to stay just behind the unbeaten Cignal HD squad (5-0) with a 5-1 card.

But assistant coach Dong dela Cruz, who took over from head mentor Dante Alinsunurin, was far from being satisfied with his wards’ win.

“They seemed so relaxed so I had to call their attention to play seriously,” said dela Cruz. “But despite that, our blocking clicked when we needed it most.”

The Nationals dominated the net with 17 kill blocks, frustrating the IEM attackers.

The Nationals blew a 19-15 lead in the opening frame as the Volley Masters countered with a 6-2 run to force a 21-all count then Mark Enciso and Razzel Palisoc stepped up to snare the win for IEM.

But Rebisco-Phl struck back in the next two which they dominated before fending off IEM’s late charge then the Nationals outlasted the Volley Masters in the fourth to pound out the win.

Joven Camaganakan scored 20 points for the Phoenix Volley Masters, who fell to 1-5.

In other results, Animo Green repulsed Coast Guard, 27-29, 25-21, 25-22, 18-25, 15-8, to hike its slate to 4-2 while Sta. Elena also held on to frustrate Easytrip, 28-26, 25-21, 21-25, 25-21, to even its card at 3-3.
Coast Guard fell to 0-6 while Easytrip absorbed its seventh straight loss in the tournament organized by Sports Vision.