ELIMINATION-round topnotchers Central Visayas and NCR-West try to arrange a showdown for the Shakey’s Girls Volleyball Tournament-of-Champions crown on Saturday as they take on separate foes in the Final Four at the Ninoy Aquino Stadium.
Spearheaded by the Southwestern University hitters, Central Visayas hopes to nail the first finals berth against the De La Salle-Lipa-backed Southern Luzon side at 10 a.m. while the Big City bets, represented by NCR regional winner Hope Christian High School with players from by Angelicum College and Kings’ Montessori School, go for the other championship slot against the Central Philippine University-led Western Visayas squad at 11 a.m.
The winners will dispute the coveted crown on the same day at 3 p.m.
The CV tossers downed WV, 25-20, 25-17, last Thursday to cap their impressive elimination-round campaign of two-set sweeps and gain the top seeding in Pool B of the week-long tournament sponsored by Shakey’s and organized by Metro Sports.
In contrast, defending champion NCR-West needed another strong finishing kick to foil Southern Luzon, 25-19, 17-25, 25-17, in Pool A and clinch the No. 1 spot in the crossover semifinals.
Victoria, the Australian guest team, followed up its two-set win over Eastern Visayas with a 25-19, 25-21 victory over Northern Luzon to finish third in Pool B with a 2-2 card while Mindanao repulsed NCR-South, 25-20, 23-25, 25-15, to end up third in Pool A with a 2-2 slate.
While NCR-West remains the prohibitive favorite to retain the crown, Central Visayas has a solid chance of taking the title away after it emerged the only squad in the 10-team field to sweep all their matches in the single-round eliminations.
Central Visayas clipped Victoria, 25-19, 25-17, in the opener, then waylaid Eastern Visayas, 25-15, 25-16, Northern Luzon, 25-11, 25-13, and Western Visayas for a 4-0 mark while NCR-West overcame Mindanao, 25-14, 24-26, 27-25, overpowered Central Luzon, 25-18, 25-5, survived NCR-South, 25-14, 13-25, 25-22, before holding off Southern Luzon.