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Monday, May 27, 2024

Red Spikers bounce back, zap Airmen in 4

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MKA-San Beda flashed top form coming off a four-set defeat as it upended veteran-laden Philippine Air Force, 25-22, 28-30, 25-23, 25-19, to get back on track in Pool B play in the Spikers’ Turf Invitational Conference at the Paco Arena Sunday.

Reeling from a sorry loss in an extended second set duel, the Red Spikers this time endured another tough challenge in the third then rode on the momentum to control the fourth that saw them lead by as many as six, 20-14, on Kevin Montemayor and Anrei Bakil’s back-to-back hits.

Behind Ranran Abdilla, Air Force countered with a 4-1 run, which included two blocks on Montemayor, to threaten within three, 18-21. But a couple of miscues derailed the Airmen’s rally while enabling the Red Spikers to close out the match with their own 4-1 swing.

“Challenge sa kanila kapag alam nilang malakas ang kalaban. Mas lumalabas yung tunay na galing nila, so ayun, parehas lang naman may skills, nasa kanila na yun kung paano sila gagalaw sa loob,” said San Beda head coach Ariel Dela Cruz.

The Airmen did come into the match brimming with confidence after disposing of PCU Dasmariñas-Saskin last Oct. 22.

“In-advice ko sa kanila na mag-enjoy, dapat nakangiti sa loob ng court kasi doon sila huhugot ng (lakas) at makapag isip sila nang maayos,” added Dela Cruz.

Ralph Cabalsa scored 16 points, all on attacks, and finished with nine excellent digs to pace San Beda while Mohammad Tahiluddin had 14 attack points he laced with 11 excellent receptions.

Bakil and Greg Munsing added 10 points apiece while Montemayor had nine markers.

Jerome Lopez tossed 16 excellent sets to go along with seven points, including four aces, for the Red Spikers, who lost to the Cabstars-City of Cabuyao side last Oct. 25.

Abdilla’s 28-point outing went down the drain as the Airmen fell to 1-1 in a tie with their tormentors. He had 25 attacks, two blocks, and one ace to go and produced 11 excellent receptions and seven excellent digs.

San Beda, meanwhile, resumes its drive against powerhouse La Salle-EcoOil next Sunday while Air Force tries to bounce back against Cabstars-Cabuyao on Friday.

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