Top contenders, led by National U-Nazareth School, eye to complete group sweeps to formalize playoff entry in the last playdate of the of Shakey’s Girls Volleyball Invitational League elimination rounds Saturday at the San Andres Gym in Malate, Manila.
NU-NS, the reigning UAAP juniors champion, is unblemished in Group A with a 2-0 card while other fancied squads Bacolod Tay Tung High School (2-0), California Academy (2-0) and Naga College Foundation (2-0) lead Groups B, C and D, respectively.
Against separate counterparts in the six-game bill, they are heavily favored to prevail once more to officially march into the crossover quarterfinals starting with NU-NS’ bid against Gracel Christian College Foundation (1-1) at 9 a.m.
California Academy battles Arellano U (1-1) at 12 p.m., Naga tests the mettle of Emilio Aguinaldo College-Immaculate Conception Academy (0-2) at 3:30 p.m. as Bacolod clashes with Kings’ Montessori School (1-1) at 5 p.m.
In between those matches are the pivotal games featuring La Salle Zobel (1-1) versus University of Santo Tomas (1-1) at 10:30 a.m. in Group D and La Salle Lipa (1-1) against University of Perpetual Help System Dalta (0-2) at 2 p.m. in Group A.
Only the top two teams from each group will advance to the quarterfinals of the 16-team GVIL backed by Shakey’s Pizza Parlor, Potato Corner, Peri-Peri and R&B Tea with the City of Manila as government cooperation partner.
And NU-NS certainly wants to prime up for that in anticipation of strong resistance from equally formidable squads.
“Hindi pa kami satisfied. We need to prepare more kasi mas mabibigat na ‘yung mga susunod na games,” said Lady Bullpups coach Vilet Ponce-De Leon as NU made short work of Perpetual and La Salle Lipa in their first two matches.
Naga and California Academy echo the same mindset after easy wins in their respective groups, preaching no room for complacency moving forward in the GVIL also powered by Mikasa, Team Rebel Sports, Toby’s Sports, Genius Sports and SM Tickets.
“Sana magtuloy-tuloy pa. Kaya naman namin makipagsabayan. Handa lang kami. Subukan lang namin kung kaya hanggang sa dulo,” said Naga mentor Parley Tupaz.
“We have to be mentally ready in order to be successful here in the Shakey’s. We have to better. We have to improve to continue progressing forward,” said California Academy tactician Obet Vital.
All games of Shakey’s GVIL, in partnership with Athletic Events and Sports Management, Inc., (ACES), will be broadcasted live and on-demand through all social media platforms courtesy of Plus Network with CNN Philippines, Solar Sports and Tap Sports as TV partners.