MAJOY Baron stepped up when it mattered most for F2 Logistics as she nailed the clutch blows to complete an amazing Game One comeback over Petron and inch one game closer from bagging the Philippine Superliga (PSL) Invitational championship.
The Cargo Movers squandered a 13-10 lead in the fifth set as the Blaze Spikers tied it at 14. But Baron came to the rescue hitting a runner followed by a game-clinching service ace to survive rival Petron in five sets, 18-25, 25-23, 20-25, 29-27, 18-16, on Thursday at the Arena in San Juan City.
“For me kasi, ibang usapan na ‘to kasi Finals na. ‘Yung breaks na rin ng game na nasa amin ‘yung momentum,” said Baron, who finished with 15 points off eight spikes, four blocks and three service aces.
“For me, ayaw kong bitawan ‘yun and kailangan ko mag-start sa sarili ko para makita ng teammates ko na lumalaban so ‘yun lang nasa isip ko,” the former De La Salle star added.
Baron also made the crucial block on Sisi Rondina in the fourth set to force a deciding fifth set and helped the Cargo Movers in erasing the Blaze Spikers’ 2-1 set lead and momentarily, drew the first blood after a classic two-hour and 24-minute battle.
The UAAP Season 79 Most Valuable Player, who was a late edition in the previous Grand Prix Finals but still lost to Petron in Game Three, is eager to get a sweet revenge for F2 Logistics and deliver the franchise’s third title.
“Oo naman kasi siyempre finals naman ‘yan. Kahit naman sinong kalaban diyan, Finals pa rin ‘to, magaling rin naman ‘yung Petron, so hindi madali ‘yung pagdadaanan namin as a team,” she said.
But despite moving one win away from winning the Invitational title, the 5-foot-11 middle hitter said that their team still has a lot of problems to address just like their sluggish start that led to 39 errors in Game 1.
“For the past few games, parang lagi kaming slow start ‘yung first six,” the 22-year-old spiker, who hails from Tarlac, said. “So parang ‘yun siguro ang naging problema. Mabagal ‘yung umpisa tapos parang hindi kami naglalaro as a team, unlike ‘yung second six mas may jelling.”
Baron believes that the Cargo Movers have to work as a team to finally seal the Invitational title in Game Two on Saturday at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.
“Matured players na kami so kailangan lang namin mag-work as a team and ‘wag maglaro para sa sarili kasi siyempre may mga pangalan na ‘yan dapat as a team pa rin and ‘yung sistema dapat hindi ‘yun nawawala kasi ‘yun ‘yung magpapanalo sa amin,” she added.