March 12, 2023

Cotabato, Imus look to boost semis chances

AMC-Cotabato and Imus-Ivy Tuason Photography seek to bolster their semis chances or clinch the tickets altogether if stars align, while VNS hopes to brighten its dimming next round odds today (Sunday) in the 2023 Spikers' Turf Open Conference triple-header at the Paco Arena. The Griffins, currently at 4-3, will open the day at 12:30 pm against a much-improved Santa Rosa City in a must-win matchup for the former if they want to catch the last bus to the Top Four. AMC (6-1), Imus (6-3), and Iloilo (6-2) are all above VNS with the first two teams hoping for the latter to lose against the Lions for an easier path to the next round. If the Griffins bow to Santa Rosa and drop to 4-4 with two games left, the Cotabato Spikers and AJAA Spikers only need to win their games against lowly Vanguard and hapless National U-Archipelago, respectively, later in the day to barge to the semis. VNS will lean on the veteran moves of Pemie Bagalay and Ron Medalla anew while also getting needed contributions from Noy Pedrosa, Jake Buslig, and Russel Fronda. Meanwhile, if the Griffins aced their test against Santa Rosa, AMC and Imus can only hope to increase their chances of making it to the best four squads. The Cotabato Spikers, who were coming off a four-set romp of PGJC Navy last Friday, will look to ride the hot hands of Jau Umandal again who fired 27 against the Sealions. Hero Austria, Ridz Muhali, and Kim Malabunga will lead the AJAA Spikers against the Volley Builders who are at 1-6.