Spikers Turf: Cignal breezes past Iloilo, steps closer to finals


Posted at Mar 25 2023 03:45 PM

Cignal HD is on the brink of a Finals berth in the Spikers' Turf Open Conference. PVL Media.
Cignal HD is on the brink of a Finals berth in the Spikers' Turf Open Conference. PVL Media.

MANILA -- Cignal stepped closer to the Spikers' Turf Open Conference finals following a trouble-free 25-17, 25-16, 25-19 win over Iloilo in the round-robin semifinals at the Rizal Memorial Coliseum on Friday.

The HD Spikers, who swept the 10-game elimination round in dominant fashion, will try to complete a sweep of the semifinals against Cotabato on Monday to formalize their place in the championship series.

They also trampled the Imus AJAA Spikers in three at the start of semis last Wednesday for a total of six points.

"It always boils down to preparation, so nag-prepare kami nang maigi," said Cignal head coach Dexter Clamor. 

"Sabi ko sa kanila resilient yung kalaban so we just need to be more resilient kasi kung hahayaan lang namin silang magsipag tapos kami relax lang, baka mabaligtad yung resulta."

Jade Disquitado and Nas Gwaza went back-to-back to open the match but that proved to be the best that Iloilo could dish out as Cignal countered with a huge run on its way to a 19-9 bulge. 

The powerhouse HD Spikers were never threatened from there although the D'Navigators kept it close in brief stretches in the next two frames.

In the other semis game on Friday, AMC-Cotabato remained in finals contention via a tight straight sets win against Imus-Ivy Tuason Photography, 25-19, 28-26, 25-23.

The Cotabato Spikers were composed down the stretch in the third set, coming back from a 21-23 deficit after AJAA Spiker Hero Austria went crosscourt. 

Jau Umandal came through with a through-the-block kill before Vince Mangulabnan knotted the game with a service ace. 

Back-to-back errors by Imus ended the game. 

"Mindset lang namin hindi kami pwedeng matalo kumbaga do or die eh. Ginawa lang namin yung best namin," said Umandal.