By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña
The Akari Chargers bounced back and re-entered the winning column of the Premier Volleyball League (PVL) All-Filipino Conference after dispatching Chery Tiggo, 25-20, 18-25, 25-22, 25-20, last October 24, 2023, held at the Ynares Center.
After absorbing a disappointing sweeping loss against the PLDT High-Speed Hitters despite a morale-boosting win over the F2 Logistics, the Chargers showed poise under pressure to crack the talented Chery Tiggo team.
Akari quickly got into their rhythm starting with their middle blocking which resulted into early points.
It then paved the way for veteran outside hitter Dindin Santiago-Manabat to operate on the offensive end to help Akari gain the early 1-0 advantage.
Manabat was just all over the court spiking the open ball from cross-court to down-the-line which became their edge on Chery Tiggo in the game.
However, Chery Tiggo retaliated in the following set after minimizing their unforced errors while doubling their effort in the floor coverage department.
The last two sets then became an intense battle as both squads answered every scoring run but it was the Chargers who got the last laugh led by the clutch sets that ran to Manabat.
Manabat led Akari with a vintage performance, scoring 21 points built from 16 successful attacks while also tallying four blocks and a service ace.
Backstopping Manabat was sophomore sensation and former Ateneo superstar Faith Nisperos who notched 17 points built from 12 successful attacks.
“The system or whatever you want to implement depends on the performance of the guys. The wins will come as a result if you play hard and study,” said Akari head coach Jorge Souza de Brito.