After primarily banking on Michele Gumabao to deliver in Game 1, Pocari Sweat needed its other hitters to show up if it is to force a Game 3 in the Shakey’s V-League Open Conference finals.
And on Saturday, with their backs against the wall, the Lady Warriors found salvation in young guns Myla Pablo and Elaine Kasilag.
Shortly after being named the 2nd Best Outside Hitter of the tournament, Pablo went to work, scoring a game-high 19 points off 17 kills and 2 aces.
Meanwhile, Kasilag, who was scoreless in the fifth set in Game 1, added 11 markers, with some of her spikes coming in the most crucial moments for Pocari Sweat.
Pablo said having experienced a win-or-go-home situation greatly helped the Lady Warriors battle the pressure Saturday night.
“Malaking bagay sa amin yung do or die,” said the former NU standout. “Naranasan na namin yun against Bali Pure.”
True enough, that experience came in handy against the Jet Spikers, who seemed driven to hammer the final nail on Pocari’s coffin with a big first-set effort.
“Medyo off kami nung first set,” Pablo admitted. “Pero nag adjust kami. Tulong-tulong kami sa loob ng court.”
Now armed with a chance to essay a repeat of their semifinals comeback, Pablo said they will be ready for whatever Air Force will throw at them come Game 3 on Monday.
“Alam namin babawi yung Air Force,” she said. “Syempre, kami di papatalo. Championship yan e.” — By Josiah Albelda