By Jerome Lagunzad
(The Arena, San Juan City)
2 p.m. – Tacloban vs Iriga-Navy
4 p.m. – Pocari Sweat vs BanKo Perlas
6 p.m. – PetroGazz vs BaliPure
Pocari Sweat-Air Force guns for the third semifinal berth while BanKo-Perlas looks to boost its own Final Four drive as they square off today in the quarterfinal round of the Premier Volleyball League Season 2 Reinforced Conference
Game time is at 4 p.m. inside The Arena in San Juan City, with the Lady Warriors determined to join outright semifinalists, the Creamline Cool Smashers and the PayMaya High Flyers.
It’s easier said than done, however, since the Perlas Spikers are also determined to come up with a follow-up to their straight-set 25-22, 25-20, 25-18 win over the reeling Tacloban Fighting Warays last weekend.
Meanwhile, BaliPure-National University, which survived Iriga-Navy in five sets, also guns for a second straight victory against PetroGazz at 6 p.m. in another crucial showdown that’s expected to go down the wire.
The Angels fell prey to the Lady Warriors but recovered with a 25-15, 25-17, 25-21 victory over the Warays last Wednesday to keep their own bid for one of the two remaining semis berths alive.
Tacloban and Iriga-Navy, posting similar 0-2 cards, knock each other out from the race as they tangle in the 2 p.m. opener.
In men’s play, PLDT guns shoots for its second win and the solo lead as it collides with Army at 10 a.m. in the quarterfinals.
Pocari coach Jasper Jimenez is counting anew on imports Arielle Love and Madeline Palmer with local ace and skipper Myla Pablo also raring to size herself up against BanKo-Perlas’ reinforcements Lakia Bright and Jutarat Montripila, along with locals Amy Ahomiro, Joy Dacoron, Sue Roces, Jem Ferrer and Gizelle Tan.
BaliPure, including high school standouts Joyme Cagande, Faith Nisperos, Alyssa Solomon, Mhicaela Belen and Princess Robles, is also bracing for a fierce showdown with the Angels.
Imports Janisa Johnson and Alexis Matthews of BaliPure intend to slow down PetroGazz counterparts Olena Lymareva-Flink and Anastasiia Trach while the Angels’ locals of Cherry Nunag, Stephanie Mercado, Relea Saet, Mary Mendrez, Alyssa Layug and Maricar Baloaloa seek to assert their dominance.