SASA Devanadera bailed PLDT Home Telpad out of trouble as the Turbo Boosters survived a huge Meralco fightback to hack out a 25-20, 25-14, 22-25, 16-25, 17-25, and stay alive in the Finals race of the Shakey's V-League Season 11 Foreign Reinforced Conference at The Arena in San Juan on Tuesday.
The former San Sebastian standout scored eight points, including the last two points from a spike and a service ace to lift the Turbo Boosters to the win and evened their record at 2-2.
PLDT Home Telpad stayed in third spot behind Cagayan (2-1) and league leader Army (4-0).
San Sebastian ace spiker Gretchel Soltones powered the Turbo Boosters with 28 points, from 27 hits and the team's lone block during the two-hour and 10-minute game, while Lou Ann Latigay came away with 21 markers.
But PLDT coach Roger Gorayeb was shouting on top of his lungs after the game, saying the Turbo Boosters should have won the game in straight sets if only their minds were on the game and not on the scoreboard.
“Dapat sa third set pa lang panalo na kami, masyado kasi sila nag concentrate sa score, kaya ayan 95 percent ng mga misreceive namin nai-puntos ng kalaban, kami na lang ang nagbibigay ng puntos sa kanila,” the veteran mentor told a handful of sportswriters.
Team captaiin Sue Roces did not suit up for PLDT due to tonsilitis and fever since Monday.
“Tapos wala pa si Kuya,” said Gorayeb referring to Roces. “Pero ganoon pa man nanalo is nanalo.”
Looking for its first win, Meralco came within match point, 14-13, courtesy of Soltones' attack error and Penetrante-Ouano's block of Soltones spike.
PLDT scored back-to-back points to snatch match point, 15-14, but Meralco tied the game at 15-all as Soltones failed to cross the ball.
“Si Gretchel sa buong laro naitawid niya ang bola, doon lang sa fifth set nag-net over ang mga palo, lumalabas ang pagkabata,” said Gorayeb of the 19-year old spiker.
Wanida Kotruang finished with 19 points for the Power Attackers, while Paneng Mercado and Maica Morada added 15 and 11 markers, respectively.
Meralco remained winless in five-outings and bowed out of championship contention.