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F2 Logistics shocks Creamline in five-set thriller

Games Thursday:

(Smart Araneta Coliseum)

2:30 p.m. – Cignal vs Petro Gazz

5:30 p.m. – Akari vs PLDT


F2 Logistics clawed its way out of a 0-2 match deficit to stun the erstwhile unbeaten Creamline in a come-from-behind fashion, 22-25, 23-25, 25-20, 25-19, 15-11, extending its winning run to three in the Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference on Tuesday night.

In the first-ever encounter of two of the country’s star-studded and most popular clubs in the league’s historic first staging at the Smart Araneta Coliseum witnessed by 8,595-strong crowd, it was the Cargo Movers’ solid blocking and explosive service game that helped F2 Logistics pull off an amazing comeback which could be a prelude to a budding rivalry.

The Cargo Movers collected 14 kill blocks with six coming from Kim Kiannna Dy while landing a total of 14 service winners.

F2 Logistics broke an 8-8 deadlock in the deciding fifth set with a closing 7-3 run to hike their win-loss record to 3-2.

Kalei Mau sparked the run with a kill as former NCAA Most Valuable Player Shola Alvarez pushed the Cargo Movers’ advantage to 13-9 with a service ace.

American import Lindsay Stalzer put F2 Logistics at match point with a crosscourt hit but Iris Tolenada overshot her serve in the next play.

Middle Elaine Kasilag then sealed the win with a kill that ended the two-hour, 31-minute classic.

“Both sides were giving a show. It was a battle of heavy hits,” F2 Logistics head coach Benson Bocboc said.

“At first it was an exchange of powerful attacks but in the end I think our service game spelled the difference. Our service worked a lot,” he added.

The Cargo Movers regrouped in the third set after surrendering the first two frames.

Stalzer and Dy carried F2 Logistics in the closing stretch of the third set.

The Cargo Movers carried the momentum into the fourth set as they opened a 23-12 gap. Creamline saved four set points before Alvarez smashed the through the block hit that forced the decider.

“In the fourth and fifth sets, everything got into place. Our defense, blocking, and everything is going our way,” Bocboc said. “It’s a complete team effort. Everyone from the team helped even those from the bench.”

Stalzer finished with 27 points hinged on 22 attacks, three aces and two kill blocks. She also delivered 11 excellent recaptions and four digs for the F2 Logistics, who missed playing Creamline in the Open Conference as it was bracketed in a different group and skipped the Invitational Conference.

Dy had 18 markers while Mau scored all of her 11 markers on kills. Aby Marano added 11 for the Cargo Movers.

Semis-bound Creamline suffered its first defeat in six games tied with Chery Tiggo, who occupied the other Final Four seat.

Turkish import Yeliz Basa led the Cool Smashers with 19 points, Jema Galanza had 12 markers, Alyssa Valdez had 12 points and 16 digs while Celine Domingo got 11.

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