Laures, Crossovers smother Highrisers for solo lead in PVL All-Filipino tourney


CHERY TIGGO disposed of Galeries Tower, 25-14, 25-18, 25-21, to wrest the solo lead in the Premier Volleyball League All-Filipino Conference at the Filoil EcoOil Arena in San Juan Thursday.

The Crossovers—coming off a scrambling 25-21, 25-23, 25-22 over unfancied Farm Fresh last Tuesday, logged their second straight-set victory for early control in the season-ending conference of the league organized by Sports Vision.

The Highrisers, in contrast, absorbed their second straight defeat after yielding an 11-25, 24-25, 22-25 loss to the Petro Gazz Angels also Tuesday.

“We were able to stick to the plan. We’re not actually looking after the result but in building chemistry,” said Chery Tiggo coach Aaron Velez. “Whoever is brought in, it’s not necessarily that they deliver but more on to keep pace with our lead players.”

With sisters EJ and Eya Laure on the firing end, the Crossovers found little trouble handling the Highrisers throughout their one-hour and 17-minute encounter, ending up with 43 attack points for a glaring 16-hit edge over their rivals still working on their cohesion, reception and net defense.

Galeries actually mounted a late rally in the third behind the heavy-handed Dimdim Pacres, whose power hits and clever drop balls helped pull the Highrisers to within one twice, the last at 20-21. But the Crossovers simply warded off the threat, scoring four of the last five points capped by Cess Robles’ stinging back-to-back kills.

Robles, who anchored Chery Tiggo’s win over Farm Fresh with a 10-point blast in a two-set stint, also saw limited action against Galeries but the former National University stalwart delivered and ended up with three points in a late third set appearance.

“Every conference, we need to improve. It’s all about connection,” said playmaker Jasmine Nabor, who produced 14 excellent sets, the bulk of which set the tone for the Laure’s assaults, leading to their second straight combined 27-point output.

Nabor also finished with seven points and five excellent digs in a superb all-around performance that netted her the Player of the Game honors.

She also made three blocks as the Crossovers wound up with a 11 against the Foxies’ measly one-block contribution from Mary Anne Esguerra.

EJ, who scored 13 points against the Foxies, unloaded 15 hits while Eya slowed from a 14-point game to 12-point showing while Shaya Adorador matched Nabor’s output and Imee Hernandez and Jaycel delos Reyes combined for nine points as the Crossovers continued to buck the absence of injured top gun Mylene Paat and setter Joyme Cagande.

Pacres ended up with 11 points but failed to draw solid backup from the rest with Esguerra and Norielle Ipac chipping in four points apiece and Audrey Paran, Rapril Aguilar and Joy Doromal putting up a three-point showing each for the Highrisers, who however produced four aces against their rivals’ three.

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