With a hard-fought four-set triumph against the reeling Cignal HD Spikers, the Perlas Spikers scored their first victory, 20-25, 25-20, 25-22, 25-21, in the 2021 Premier Volleyball League Open Conference at the Bacarra, Ilocos Norte bubble on Thursday, July 29.
Gel Cayuna led the offense to the team’s first professional victory with 24 superb sets and 9 points to go along with four aces.
With 13 points apiece, Nicole Tiamzon, Cherry Nunag, and Heather Guino-o all benefited from Cayuna’s playmaking, while veteran hitter Sue Roces added 11 points.
In a fight of flailing squads, both teams went blow for blow, and in the third set, 22 all, with one set win apiece, they were dead even.
Perlas, though, used the momentum they gained from being down 19-21 to win the set 25-22, thanks to a decisive 6-1 run highlighted by a rapid Nunag hit off the Cignal overreception.
The HD Spikers made matters worse by committing late back-to-back mistakes in the fourth inning, giving Perlas a 20-14 lead.
The trio of Roces, Nunag, and Guino-o then took turns scoring all the way to match point, 24-20, until a final Cignal blunder sealed their fate.
Janine Marciano had a 12-hit game, and Norielle Ipac and Rosalyn Doria each scored 11 and 10 points for the HD Spikers, but they couldn’t keep up their good play.
With the win, Perlas ended a two-game losing streak and improved to a 1-2 record after a difficult quarantine delay and back-to-back losses on successive days.
Cignal, on the other hand, dropped its third straight game and fell to 1-5, one loss away from elimination. They now need to sweep their last three games and hope only three teams reach win no. 4 to force a playoff for the last semis seat.
Perlas will face the Petro Gazz Angels on Friday, July 30, at 4 PM. Meanwhile, Cignal will have to wait for their next game on the modified schedule in order to keep their playoff hopes alive.