Rebisco PSL-Manila dropped all of its six matches in the 2017 Asian Women’s Club Volleyball Championship. (Photo courtesy of asianvolleyball.net)
UST-KAMENOGORSK, Kazakhstan — Rebisco PSL-Manila ran into a battle-ready Vietin Bank of Vietnam to surrender a 25-13, 25-18, 25-15 decision and finish eighth and last in the Asian Women’s Club Volleyball Championships Wednesday here.
It was heartbreaking defeat for the Philippine club, which are the crowd favorites here at Boris Alexandrov Sports Palace for their gutsy, all-heart style of game.
Yet against the Vietnamese, the Filipinos were listless and unsure, yielding precious points on attack errors and failing to protect their turf against enemy attacks.
Backed by Asics, Grand Sport and Turkish Airlines, the all-Filipino Rebisco PSL-Manila thus lost all six assignments here although the stint here was primarily to set up the national team and gain valuable experience needed for the AVC Asian Senior Women’s Championship and the 29th Southeast Asian Games in August.
It was the fourth eighth place finish of the PHI after landing at the same spot in 2011 under the Shakey’s banner in the eight-team field. In 2014 the PLDT Home TVolution ended up in the same position in a 10-team field while Petron finished second to the last in a nine-club edition in 2015. The Pinays best finish in the tournament was in 2006 that was held in Manila at seventh place in an 8-team field while Foton Pilipinas ended up at the same spot in a 12-club field last year in Binan, Laguna.
Jaja Santiago led with 10 points but was mostly bothered by Vietin’s solid net defense while Aby Marano and Rachel Daquis added seven each. Lefty opposite Jovelyn Gonzaga made five markers.
Kim Fajardo dished out 44 excellent sets and three points. Maika Ortiz also had three points, while Mika Reyes and Bia General scored one each. Also comprising the team are Gen Casugod, Aiza Pontillas, Rhea Dimaculangan, Lourdes Clemente and Denden Lazaro.
The Filipinos led, 10-5, in the second set but it quickly disappeared amid Vietnam’s consistent attacks that yielded them 47 points as against 25 attack points of the Philippines.
Marano, the team’s undersized but big-hearted middle blocker, accounted for four of the team’s nine blocks which was three points better than that of Vietin.
But Vietnam lorded it over in digs, 46-19 and reception, 26-18, which allowed it to set-up its offense well.
Pham Thi Jim Hue and Doan Thi Xuan led Vietnam with 16 and 12 points while Le Than Thu added nine. Team captain Nguyen Thi Xuan and Hoang Mint Tham chipped in eight apiece.
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