CIGNAL passed through the eye of a needle before it downed Instituto Estetico Manila, 20-25, 25-19, 22-25, 25-15, 15-11, in the men's division of the Philippine Super Liga All Filipino Conference at
Astrodome on Sunday night.
Mike Abria scored 17 for the HD Spikers, while Howard Mojica added 16, Bonjomar Castel had 14, Jeffrey Lansangan chipped in 12, and Edmar Sanchez, who came off the bench, with 10.
"Medyo maganda ang laro ng IEM, pinag-handaan nila kami at least kahit dumaan kami sa butas ng karayom panalo pa rin," said Cignal coach Macky Carino.
Down by two sets, the HD Spikers regained momentum and started out the fourth set with a five-point lead, 7-2, eventually stretching their lead, 21-11, to extend the match to a fifth and deciding set.
From a tied 10-all contest in the fifth set, Cignal came with a 4-0 run behind the spikes and blocks of Mojica as the HD Spikers took a 14-10 lead.
Cignal proved steadier at the net with 20 blocks, compared to seven of the Phoenix Volley Masters.
HD Spikers ended the first round of eliminations with 3-1 record behind unbeaten league leader PLDT Home TVolution (4-0).
Conde's 21-point production went down the drain as IEM absorbed its third straight loss in four games.
Carl Ortega, Karl dela Calzada and JR Timbal added 12, 11, and 10 markers each for IEM.