(Smart Araneta Coliseum)
2:30 p.m. – PLDT vs Cignal
5:30 p.m. – F2 Logistics vs Akari
MJ Phillips played clutch in the closing stretch of the fifth set to tow Petro Gazz to a 25-14, 24-26, 25-13, 21-25, 15-9, victory over Chery Tiggo in the Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Saturday.
The Filipino-American middle blocker delivered four crucial points that created a sizeable lead to frustrate the semifinals-bound Crossovers as the Angels moved closer to joining their victim and Creamline in the Final Four.
Petro Gazz bounced back from a painful five-set defeat at the hands of Cignal last Thursday to improve its win-loss record to 4-2 to keep a tight hold of the no. 3 spot.
“We’ll take it, every win. Five, four, three, we need every game,” Angels coach Rald Ricafort said. “This is a good lesson for us coming from our loss last game.”
“Like what I told them before the fifth set, we need the composure that we did not show in our last game. We were able to show that in the fifth set,” he added. “We had crucial blocks, crucial spikes. So we saw the composure missing in our last game.”
Phillips gave the Angels an 8-6 lead in the fifth set and when Chery Tiggo answered with a hit, she unleashed three straight points punctuated by a quick attack to widen Petro Gazz’s gap to 11-7.
American import Lindsey Vander Weide scored a hit and a solid kill block on Crossovers ace hitter Mylene Paat for the Angels to reach match point, 14-9. Aiza Maizo-Pontillas ended the game with a defensive gem at the net off an EJ Laure attack.
Phillips finished with 23 points she collected off 15 attacks, seven kill blocks and an ace while Vander Weide got 29 markers including 25 kills and added 12 digs for Petro Gazz, who plugged the net with 13 kill blocks.
Chery Tiggo suffered its second straight defeat in seven games.
Paat fired all of her 21 points on spikes, Czarina Carandang had 17 markers while Laure had 11 points and 13 digs for the Crossovers, who will close their elims campaign on Thursday against PLDT.