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Chameleons shine in PVL debut

Expansion team Nxled turns to Lycha Ebon's explosive performance to sweep Gerflor in its PVL All-Filipino Conference debut. (PVL photo)

Newcomer Nxled made a loud announcement of its arrival in the Premier Volleyball League after dominating Gerflor, 25-18, 25-14, 25-19, in their All-Filipino Conference debut Sunday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Veterans Lycha Ebon and Jho Maraguinot showed the way for the Chameleons, who welcomed Japanese coach Takayuki Minowa with a victory in his first game in the Philippines.

Minowa lauded his wards’ impressive outing where 10 players submitted points as setter Kamille Cal dished out nine excellent sets.

“As a Nxled coach, today’s target is everyone playing inside the court and we did it,” Minowa, husband of Japan V.League star Jaja Santiago, said.

“This week, we focused on block, catching (receiving) and kill points and also defense. Today we had good stops. We’re able to break the opponent’s side and take them out of their system. We got a lot of breakpoints. That’s a good point in this match.”

Ebon led all scorers with 14 points including 12 kills while Maraguinot posted nine of her 11 markers on attacks as they looked poised to spread their wings with their new club after seeing limited action with Nxled’ sister team Akari last conference.

“We’re really glad about our win. I focused on how to play my game and didn’t think too much about winning or losing. We just trust the process. We tried to be patient. I’m really happy because it showed that everyone contributed to this game,” Ebon said.

A 19-8 opening frame lead set the tone for the Chameleons’ dominating win.

Nxled faced little resistance if any from the Defenders the rest of the way for the convincing 81-minute triumph.

The Chameleons lorded over at the net with nine kill blocks and outgunned their rivals on spikes, 42-30.

Victory remained elusive for Gerflor, which joined the league in the PVL Invitational Conference. The Defenders are now on a six-game losing skid since the last tournament.

Jenny Gaviola paced Gerflor with nine points while Danika Gendrauli had seven markers.

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