FORMER rivals Ysay Marasigan of Ateneo and Raymark Woo of La Salle team up as Cignal TV, Inc. kicks off its title drive in the second Spikers' Turf Open Conference Saturday at The Arena in San Juan.
The HD Spikers pulled off the biggest recruiting coup of the off-season as it tapped the power-hitting Woo, the best scorer in the last UAAP season, to play side by side with Marasigan, a key figure in Ateneo's UAAP title romp this year.
Woo will not only join Marasigan but also bolster a team loaded with talent, including Bonjomar Castel of reigning NCAA titlist Perpetual Help, Sandy Montero, Jay dela Cruz, Lorenzo Capate, Jr., Edmar Bonono and Vincent Mangulabnan.
"We're really blessed to have Ysay and Raymark Woo in our team because they will give us additional options," said Cignal coach Michael Carino.
A lone match will usher in the Spikers' Turf second season with Navy clashing with Instituto Estetico Manila at 1 p.m.
It will also serve as a prelude to the 13th season of the Shakey’s V-League where National U and Team Laoag will tangle at 4 p.m. and Pocari Sweat and University of the Philippines collide at 6:30 p.m.
All matches in the Shakey’s V-League will be telecast live over ABS CBN Sports + Channel, according to the organizers Sports Vision.
With Carino at the helm, the HD Spikers grounded the Air Force side to snare the Reinforced Conference crown in last year’s inaugurals of the country’s first-ever men’s indoor volley league.
"We believe in the sport and it is about time to give our men's players a venue for them to play after school," said Sports Vision's Ricky Palou.
With a crack roster, Carino is optimistic of his wards’ chances to duplicate their Reinforced Conference feat and improve on their fourth place finish in the Open Conference last year.
"I don't want to sound boastful but I would have to admit that winning another title is our target," said Carino.
Cignal will mark its debut on Monday as it faces Bounty Fresh while Sta. Elena clashes with Air Force on Wednesday.