Pocari opens PVL title defense on the road


Posted at May 11 2018 05:56 AM

The Pocari Sweat Lady Warriors open their title-retention campaign in Tuguegarao. Josh Albelda, ABS-CBN Sports

MANILA, Philippines – Defending champion Pocari Sweat-Air Force and powerhouse Creamline take their talents to Tuguegarao, where they face off against separate opponents on Saturday in the Premier Volleyball League's (PVL) first out-of-town game day of the Reinforced Conference.

The Lady Warriors, after losing Michele Gumabao and Melissa Gohing to Creamline, have now linked up with Jet Spikers to bolster their title-retention drive.

Wendy Semana, Iari Yongco, Dell Palomata, Angel Mae Antipuesto, and May Ann Pantino will now backstop Pocari mainstays Myla Pablo, Elaine Kasilag, and Jeanette Panaga.

Pocari has also tapped a pair of imports who are eager to prove their worth in Maddie Palmer and Arielle Love, who suited up for Radford and Duquesne, respectively.

In college, Palmer recorded 1,494 kills, the highest in Radford University during the rally era, while posting 1,116 digs, making her only the fifth player in Radford history with at least 1,000 kills and 1,000 digs.

Love, for her part, is a three-time Atlantic 10 First-Team All-Conference member and was also a multi-faceted player.

However, the Lady Warriors are expected to have a tough time against the PayMaya High Flyers, who opened their campaign on a high note by crushing the Tacloban Fighting Warays last Sunday.

PayMaya got great performances from imports Nicole Rountree and Shelby Sullivan, with local standouts Grethcel Soltones and Cel Domingo also coming up with solid outings.

Game time on Saturday is at 2 p.m.

Meanwhile, Creamline will try to build on its comfortable win against Petro Gazz when they play BanKo-Perlas at 4 p.m.

The Cool Smashers leaned on Thai import Kuttika Kaewpin when they dismissed the Angels in straight sets, while Alyssa Valdez, Gumabao, and Risa Sato provided the back-up.

BanKo-Perlas will try to take down the powerhouse Creamline team, with imports Lakia Bright and Jutarat Montripila leading the way and locals Dzi Gervacio, Sue Roces, Rysabelle Devanadera, Mae Tajima, Gizelle Tan, Ella de Jesus, Amanda Villanueva, Jem Ferrer, Nicole Tiamzon and Amy Ahomiro providing the additional firepower.

The league will stay in Tuguegarao on Sunday, with Pocari and Creamline switching opponents.

Other out-of-town games have been set, including a Baliwag swing on May 23, in the league's continuing effort to bring the sport closer to the fans.

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