Petron fights back from a set down to turn back Cignal and stretch win run to three
Lindsay Stalzer with the wide open hit. Dante Peralta

PETRON came from a set down to deny Cignal, 19-25, 25-9, 25-22, 28-26, on Saturday in the Philippine Super Liga Grand Prix at The Arena in San Juan.

Lindsay Stalzer led the way with 26 points, seven digs and seven excellent receptions for the Blaze Spikers, who cruised to their third straight win to claim the solo lead in the standings.

Hillary Hurley had 18 markers and Ces Molina added 12 for Petron, which scored 10 service aces compared to just two by Cignal in the match that took two hours to finish.

“Sobrang ‘yun ‘yung crucial kasi alam ko na mangyayari kapag nagpabaya kami ng second set. Ang hirap makarecover kasi bibigat lalo ‘yung ano namin pakiramdam namin. So ‘yun lang sabi ko, warm up ‘yun, forget everything about first set,” said Petron coach Shaq delos Santos.

“Kailangan pa namin mag-improve, lalong gumaganda (ang mga laro), napag-aaralan ng mga teams 'yung mga kalaban so ‘di ka pwedeng magrelax, dapat may bala ka lagi,” he added.

After a sluggish first set, Petron woke up just in time to breeze past Cignal in the second set, which became the turning point for the Blaze Spikers.

But the HD Spikers threatened to extend the match, 22-18, after trailing, 16-18, in the fourth set.

Hillary Hurley refused to give up as she unleashed her own 3-0 spurt - from an off-the-block hit, a powerful spike and a service ace - to cut the lead down to one, 21-22.

Stalzer responded with a spike followed by a service ace to put Petron at match point, 27-26.

Cignal import Alexis Mathews’ error then handed the win to Petron.

“Expected na namin yun (mag-take over si Stalzer), kasi alam mo naman sa tagal niya na ring naglalaro, experienced player sya,” said delos Santos.

“Kumbaga sa amin, ‘di mo siya kailangang tutukan ng isa-isa or what. Basta alam niya, kailangan pag sinabi mong bumawi ka, gagawin niya lahat,” he added.

Jovelyn Gonzaga had 16 points for Cignal, while Australian import Bet Carey added 14 and Rachel Anne Daquis chipped in 10.

The HD Spikers dropped to 1-2 tied with Generika. 

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