Air Force stuns NU in five sets to secure playoff spot in V-League
Air Force bounced back from their first loss with a big win over NU. Jerome Ascano

AIR Force got back on the winning track after beating National University, 23-25, 25-21, 13-25, 25-23, 15-8, to secure at least a playoff spot in the Shakey’s V-League Season 13 Open Conference at The Arena in San Juan on Wednesday.

Judy Caballejo and Joy Cases took on the scoring load for the Jet Spikers with 16 and 14 points, respectively.

Although Air Force is a win away from entering the semis after it improved to 4-1 tied with Bali Pure, head coach Jasper Jimenez wants his wards to continue improving on five areas – service, receive, blocking, communication and floor defense.

“Sana magtuluy-tuloy pa, ‘yung mga kulang namin ‘yung limang factors nga na ‘yun kailangan i-improve pa namin. Kapag nawala ang mga ‘yun at mabigyan ng kumpyansa ang kalaban doon talaga kami nawawala,” he said.  

Trailing the match 1-2 entering the fourth set, the Jet Spikers showed their grit to force a decider and went on a 10-2 start in the final set behind Davao native Jocemer Tapic and Cases.

NU threatened, 8-12, before 6-foot-3 Air Force recruit Dell Palomata found an open spot at the back and Jorelle Singh’s attack went out, 14-8. Then the Jet Spikers went on to complete the comeback with an error from the Lady Bulldogs.  

Jaja Santiago came away with 20 points, from 15 spikes, three blocks and two service aces, for NU, Audrey Paran and Risa Sato had 12 markers apiece, while Singh chipped in 11.

Although the Lady Bulldogs dominated the net with nine blocks compared to just one for Air Force and rained down 11 service aces against five of the Jet Spikers, their efforts went down the drain as they dropped to 2-3 for an identical record with Laoag.

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