PLDT Home Fibr and Sta. Elena forced semifinal deciders in the Spikers’ Turf Reinforced Conference on Sunday at the Paco Arena.
Johnvic De Guzman came up with the match-clinching block on Ranran Abdilla as PLDT beat defending champion Go For Gold-Air Force, 26-24, 20-25, 25-21, 20-25, 15-13, to force a rubber match.
Pao Pablico led PLDT with 18 points, Joshua Umandal put up 16 points built on 13 attacks, two aces, and a block to go with 21 excellent receptions and eight digs. De Guzman and Peter Quiel added 10 points each, while Ronchette Villegas dished out 22 excellent sets.
“We have a game plan, kaso hindi na-implement nang one hundred percent, pero medyo effective naman. Medyo tapat na sila, they trusted me,” said PLDT coach Odjie Mamon told reporters.
Sta. Elena stopped Cignal, 19-25, 25-22, 21-25, 25-17, 16-14, to level the best-of-three semis series.
Nico Almendras showed the way for Sta. Elena with 17 points built on 14 attacks, two blocks, and an ace to go with 16 excellent receptions.
Berhashidin Daymil chipped in 14 markers, which included five aces.
Natividad scored 12 and Edward Camposano added 11 points, while Joshua Retamar made 24 excellent sets.
“’Yung mga bata nagrespond lang sila sa tawag namin, sabi kasi namin sa kanila na laruin lang nila yung laro nila at lalabas yung resulta,” said Sta. Elena assistant coach Dong Dela Cruz. “‘Yun lang naman ang hinahanap namin sa kanila, kahit anong resulta, basta lumaban sila.”
Jude Garcia had 30 points for Cignal, Ysay Marasigan put up 22 points, while Marck Espejo had 10 points and 17 excellent receptions.
PLDT and Air Force clash on Tuesday at 2 p.m., and Sta. Elena battles Cignal at 4 p.m.