PETRON shoved Cignal out of contention in the Philippine Super Liga All-Filipino Conference following a 25-17, 23-25, 25-20, 25-19 win Wednesday night at the Astrodome.
The win by the Blaze Spikers sent the two-time runner-up out of the Finals for the first time, while giving PLDT Home TVolution an outright ticket to the next round.
Petron improved to a 4-2 card, while Cignal ended its campaign with a 1-5 record, two games behind PLDT at 2-4.
Dindin Santiago led the way anew for the Blaze Spikers as she scattered 24 points from 19 spikes, four blocks, and one service ace.
Petron coach George Pascua was satisfied Santiago carried the team on her shoulders, but going to the quarterfinals, he has higher hopes from the team’s top offensive gem.
“Nag-step up si Dindin, pero sa quarterfinals mas mataas pa ang expectations ko sa kanya," admitted Pascua.
Petron cemented its hold of third place following the win and arranged at face off with PLDT in the quarterfinals starting on Sunday.
Cignal held a slim 19-18 lead in the third set after a Royse Tubino attack. But Petron quickly answered with a 7-1 run to finally crush whatever hopes the HD Spikers had as they needed to win the match by three or four sets to move to the next round.
"Matindi ang pride nila (Cignal) ayaw nila magpa-talo," said Pascua.
Tubino finished with 22 points for Cignal, while Norie Jane Diaz added 11.
Cignal’s failure to make a return to the Finals was compounded by the hip injury suffered by setter Arriane Argarin following a collision with Diaz in the fourth set.
Argarin was immediately rushed to the nearby San Juan de Dios hospital in Pasay City for further check-up.