Francis Vicente counts brave Philippine stand against Korea a moral victory
Francis Vicente, Alyssa Valdez and the Philippine side look to stop the bleeding and avoid falling to the bottom of their group. Jaime Campos

BINAN, Laguna — The Philippines suffered another straight-sets loss but coach Francis Vicente is counting it as a moral victory.

Vicente finds solace in the fact that the Filipinas did well enough to force Korea to field its ace player Kim Yeon Koung in all of the three sets in the 19th AVC Asian Senior Women's Volleyball Championship on Sunday at the Alonte Sports Arena. 

“Siguro may threat 'yung team, nakita nila palaban ang Pilipino so para sa akin don’t underestimate the Philippine team,” said Philippine coach Francis Vicente.

“Hindi tayo victorious sa game pero victorious tayo sa threat, it’s a very big morale-booster na ipinasok ang one of the world’s best attackers,” said Vicente.

[See Korea continues fine play to deal Philippines second straight loss in Asian women's volleyball]

The Filipinas scored four straight points to get to within one, 23-24, in the first set, with Jovelyn Gonzaga scoring on two attacks and Aby Marano on two service aces to pose a threat to Korea.

Korean coach Hong Sung Jin fielded Kim and she bailed out the Koreans.

The Pinay spikers gained momentum and put up a 12-9 lead in the second set before Kim again came off the bench to save the Koreans.

Kim did not play in their first two matches and only played in the fourth set against Vietnam.

[See Kazakhstan recovers from a set down to beat Vietnam as Thailand edges China in five in Asian volley tilt]

The Philippines now try to avoid falling to the bottom of Pool E as it battles Vietnam on Monday.

Korea and Kazakhstan are tied at the top with 2-0 cards, while the Philippines and Vietnam are at 0-2.

Thailand and Japan lead Pool F with a 2-0 win-loss cards, while Chinese Taipei and China are down 0-2.

The crossover quarterfinals will be on Tuesday.

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