PLDT Wins Over Bingo Bonanza in Philippine Super Liga Opener

Rosemarie Vargas and Paulina Soriano both had 16 points each to lead the PLDT MyDSL Speed Boosters in their victory against the Bingo Milyo...

Rosemarie Vargas and Paulina Soriano both had 16 points each to lead the PLDT MyDSL Speed Boosters in their victory against the Bingo Milyonaryo Puffins, 22-25, 25-18, 25-22, 25-20, in a four-set battle at the Philsports Arena on Sunday afternoon.

The game started with Bingo Milyonaryo using their size to get an early advantage against PLDT, opening up with a 17-10 lead against the Speed Boosters. Led by Soriano, PLDT fought back to tie the game at 17 before former DLSU Lady Spikers Michelle Gumabao and Stephanie Mercado closed out the first set in dominating fashion while forcing their opposition to commit careless errors.
Before the second set, PLDT head coach Francis Vicente changed his attack, subbing out Captain Lou Ann Latigay to go with a smaller and quicker line-up that overwhelmed Ronald Dulay’s team.
With the second set tied at 10-10, Vargas led a late assault of PLDT, beating their opponent 25-18 to tie the game at 1-1.
The Puffins came back with a vengeance in the third set, forcing their adversary to mindless errors for an early 5-1 lead. However, a couple of big-time plays by Leuseht Dawis and Wenneth Eulalio erased Bingo Milyonaryo’s deficit and gave their team a 24-16 advantage towards the end of the fourth set.
The Puffins fought back, using a 6-0 run to cut PLDT’s lead to two. However, a box-set play orchestrated by Coach Vicente ended Bingo Milyonaryo’s run and awarded the Speed Boosters a 2-1 front.
PLDT MyDSL started the fourth set complacent once again, committing careless errors that awarded their opponent a 7-0 lead to begin the battle. Just when it seemed like Dulay figured out how to solve PLDT’s small-ball game plan, Vicente re-entered Latigay, who together with Soriano, sparked a rally to tie the matchup at 14-all.
After PLDT took a 19-16 lead, Gumabao and Mercado led a last hurrah for the Puffins, but fell short as the Speed Boosters took the set, 25-20, and the game, 3-1.
After the contest, Coach Vicente talked about how proud he was of his team for adjusting in-between sets and for not giving up despite trailing early.
“Normally, sinsabai ko hindi pa tapos yung game. The score will end at 25. Kahit 10-0 pa yan, pwede kayo humabol basta you defend the ball. Keep reading the ball and keep reading the opponent. Utakan niyo lang sila,” he said.
He continued, “This team is a strong, young, and talented team. Some are fresh graduates. They're still young but they move like veterans. Aangat pa yung mga bata niyan.”
After the win against Bingo Milyonaryo, Vicente also said that he is already preparing for their next matchup against Petron, which will take place this Wednesday at the San Juan Arena.
“I can't say ano yung magiging result sa Petron. Basta, I scouted them already. We will have a practice on Monday and hopefully manalo kami,” he announced.
Angela Benting contributed 13 points to the winning team while Patrona led the Puffins with 14 markers. Former Lasallites Gumabao and Mercado scored six and four points, respectively. 
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