FANCIED Army and Air Force take on University of the Philippines and Philippine National Police, respectively, in the Shakey’s V-League Season 11 Open Conference at The Arena in San Juan on Tuesday.
Boasting of four former MVPs and tested hitters and setters, the Lady Troopers gear up for a big start against the Lady Maroons at 2 p.m., while the Raiders, also parading a slew of talented players, battle the Lady Patrollers in the 4 p.m. match.
Rachel Ann Daquis and Season 10 Open Conference MVP Jovelyn Gonzaga, who reinforced Far Eastern University’s breakthrough victory in the First Conference, are back with the star-studded Army crew that includes Nene Bautista, MJ Balse and Michelle Carolino, all former MVPs, Tina Salak, Patricia Siatan-Torres, Joanne Bunag, Ma. Theresa Iratay, Christine Agno and Dahlia Cruz.
The Lady Maroons proved they are a force to be reckoned with after dragging the National U Lady Bulldogs to a tight contest before yielding, 18-25, 25-19, 25-22, 25-23, in Sunday’s opener of the mid-season conference of the league sponsored by Shakey’s.
Katherine Bersola and Nicole Tiamzon, who combined for 27 kills against NU, Arianne Ilustre, Gayle Layug and Caryl Sandoval must raise their respective games a notch higher to surprise the highly fancied Army side, winner in Season 8 Open Conference of the league backed by Mikasa and Accel.
Like Army, Air Force hopes to draw the best from its strong roster led by Joy Cases, Iari Yongco, Judy Caballejo, Maika Ortiz and former MVP Sandra de los Santos with support to come from Rhea Dimaculangan, Wendy Semana, Jill Gustilo, Loza Deramos and Jennifer Manzano.
The Lady Patrollers lost in straight sets to the Ateneo Lady Eagles on Sunday, 15-25, 12-25, 21-25, and are eager to bounce back behind Frances Molina, Jane Maderazo, Maricor Martinez, Charisse Perez and Ann Dave with coach Manuel Gaerlan also hoping to bring the out best from the rest, including Ana Concepcion, Diane Ticar, Mary Gallano and Mae Tadeo.
Meanwhile, the Ateneo-PNP duel will be shown on GMA News TV Channel starting at 1 p.m. Tuesday, according to the organizing Sports Vision. The Army-UP clash will be aired Wednesday while the Air Force-PNP faceoff will be shown on Thursday.