UNDEFEATED Chery Tiggo booked the first spot in the 2022 Premier Volleyball League (PVL) Reinforced Conference semifinals with a gutsy five-set triumph over UAI-Army, 22-25, 25-18, 25-27, 25-18, 15-12, on Thursday at PhilSports Arena.
With their fifth win in as many games, the Crossovers secured their place at the top of the standings while sending the Lady Troopers to the brink of elimination on a 0-4 (win-loss) record.
Mylene Paat had another game to remember as he dealt the final blow on the winless but hard-fighting Lady Troopers to finish with 23 points on 21 attacks, to go with two blocks and 12 digs.
"It was a tough game. Army had really good defense and good service so we really had to put a lot of effort to make it again for us," said Monetengrin import Jelena Cvijovic, who tallied her best output yet of 19 points on 18 attacks and 19 excellent receptions.
Royse Tubino started hot for the Lady Troopers in the decider with back-to-back points, but the momentum shifted quickly to the side of the Crossovers who fired off six straight unanswered points.
Jeanette Villareal stepped up with her 11 points while Canadian import Laura Condotta kept UAI's offense going in her best game yet, finishing with a triple double 21 points off 16 digs and 12 receptions. The two helped Army regain the lead, 7-6
But the Crossovers flaunted its depth as bench players Dindin Santiago-Manabat and Shaya Adorador widened the gap, 14-9. Tubino saved three match points to finish with a game-high 24 markers, but it wasn't the Lady Troopers night yet as Paat finished the two hour and 31 minute encounter with a combination play.
Jovelyn Gonzaga recovered from her slow performance and finished with 14 points while Angela Nunag was stellar on defense with 24 digs and 22 receptions - all in a losing effort.