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Soltones, Power Hitters add more misery to Lady Skippers’ woes

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PLDT Home Fibr turned back Marinerang Pilipina, 25-21, 25-20, 18-25, 25-14, for its second straight win in the Philippine Superliga All-Filipino Conference at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan City.

Gretchel Soltones has a strong start and a stronger finish as the Power Hitters kept the Lady Skippers winless in this prestigious women’s club tourney bankrolled by Team Rebel Sports, SOGO, Eurotel, PCSO, Cocolife, UCPB Gen, Mueller, Senoh, Asics, Bizooku and One Sport.

Soltones, the former San Sebastian College star, delivered 19 kills and two blocks for a 19-point performance for the Power Hitters, who joined idle Generika-Ayala at the third spot with a 2-1 win-loss slate.

Aside from Soltones, who also had 12 digs and 10 excellent receptions, Aiko Urdas was also impressive with 15 points while setter Jasmine Nabor did a marvelous job controlling the tempo with 21 excellent sets.

Despite the victory, however, PLDT head coach Roger Gorayeb wasn’t satisfied.

“It seems that they are out of focus. That’s not the game I wanted to see after months of practice and a year of togetherness” Gorayeb said.

“There’s no steam, we’re lacking of intensity. I’m thankful for the win but they always need a wake-up call before picking up a victory.”
The Power Hitters lost steam in the third set that allowed the Lady Skippers to extend the match.

But PLDT caught fire in the fourth set with a 15-5 start off an ace from Joyce Sta. Rita before Soltones buckled down to work, delivering four straight points that put them at match point, 24-13.

Judith Abil saved a point but she committed a crucial service error.
Abil had an all-around effort with 11 points laced with 19 digs and 17 excellent receptions while Chiara Permentilla delivered 10 points on top of 11 digs off the bench for Marinerang Pilipina, which suffered its fourth straight loss.

Meanwhile, Cignal bucked a slow start before taking down Sta. Lucia, 25-27, 25-22, 25-10, 25-21, to kick off its campaign on a high note in the second game.

The HD Spikers made a rousing debut with new setter Alohi Robins-Hardy putting up 18 excellent sets and unleashed 12 points from seven kills, three aces and two blocks.

Mylene Paat had 14 points while skipper Rachel Anne Daquis delivered 13 points including 19 digs. Returning Jovelyn Gonzaga, who suffered an ACL injury two years ago, added 11 markers.

MJ Phillips carried the cudgels of Sta. Lucia with 19 points while Rachel Austero and Joy Dacoron added 13 and 11 points, respectively.

The Lady Realtors, who gave up 38 errors, dropped their third straight match sliding to a 1-3 record.