From Lady Warriors to conquerors.
Pocari Sweat eked out a hard-earned 4-set win over gritty Air Force in Game 3 to bag the 13th Shakey’s V-League Open Conference title Monday night at the Philsports Arena.
Trailing big in the first set, the Lady Warriors showed their fighting heart anew, stealing the opening frame and then closing out the Jet Spikers, 29-27, 18-25, 25-21, 25-19.
The championship is the first for the Pocari franchise, which moved from the PSL to the V-League this year.
Just like what happened in Game 2, Air Force sensed blood early on, building a 17-8 lead in the first set behind a hot start by Joy Cases.
But the Jet Spikers wasted the advantage, falling into a maze of errors as the Lady Warriors began to heat up.
By the end of the first, the set — and the momentum — have shifted to Pocari’s favor.
It was a change so crucial that even after winning the second frame, Air Force still looked like the more unsteady team.
Myla Pablo led all scorers with 23 points while Elaine Kasilag and Michele Gumabao ably supported her with 15 markers and 9 digs, and 12 points and 7 excellent receptions, respectively.
Cases finished with 20 points for the Jet Spikers, but yet another off game from Judy Caballejo ruined what has been a stellar run for the Air Force. — By Josiah Albelda