CIGNAL bucked a lethargic start before trouncing Sta. Lucia, 21-25, 25-13, 25-13, 25-19, to start its second round campaign on a high note in the Philippine Superliga Grand Prix on Tuesday at the Arena in San Juan City.
After dropping the first set, Cignal head coach Edgar Barroga made crucial adjustments changing the position of import Ana Artemeva from outside spiker to middle blocker to field veteran spiker Rachel Anne Daquis inside the rotation making the HD Spikers unstoppable in the succeeding sets winning in one hour and 49 minutes.
Artemeva was dominant in the middle blocker position finishing with a game-high 17 points, highlighted by five blocks. Fellow import Erica Wilson delivered 16 hits, while Mylene Paat and Daquis chipped in 14 and 13 markers, respectively.
“Actually yun yung pinaka the best naming adjustment nung first set, kaso lang hindi effective since medyo hindi nagpeperform yung gitna namin,” said Barroga. “So ginawa ko na munang middle muna si Ana kahit na ayaw niya, kailangan niyang magadjust. Ayun naging effective kasi nagamit din namin si Rachel at the same time.”
Libero Jheck Dionela also stepped up with 19 excellent receptions and 13 digs, while setter Acy Masangkay made 29 excellent sets on top of five points as Cignal improved to a 5-3 win-loss record at the No. 3 spot bouncing back from a loss to Petron last Saturday in Muntinlupa.
“Sabi ko sa kanila lagi niyo lang titignan kung bakit tayo natalo last time kasi kaya tayo natalo noon kasi hindi kayo lumaban,” Barroga added. “Naghanda tayo ng one week pero lahat ng pinaghirapan natin, pinagpractice-san natin hindi nagawa.”
Casey Schoenlein was the lone bright spot for Sta. Lucia with 16 points as the Lady Realtors dropped to 2-6 slate. Fil-Am star MJ Phillips, who was sidelined in the past conferences and previous games due shoulder injury returned to action but only played mid in the third with just three markers.
Cignal takes on Generika-Ayala (1-7) on Thursday, while Sta. Lucia will have a one week break before battling F2 Logistics (6-1) on Tuesday next week.