By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña
The Choco Mucho Flying Titans never relaxed despite punching that semifinal spot after sweeping the Gerflor Defenders, 25-16, 25-17, 25-11, in the ongoing Premier Volleyball League (PVL) All-Filipino Conference last November 28, 2023, held at the Philsports Arena.
With the win, the rolling Flying Titans squad extended its dominant winning streak to nine matches despite sitting out some of their key cogs.
Choco Mucho didn’t field middle blockers Maddie Madayag and Cherry Nunag against the Defenders and also sat out libero Thang Ponce.
In their absence, Bea De Leon and Denden Lazaro-Revilla stepped up for Choco Mucho and provided the much-needed lift heading into the playoffs.
Both veterans were not a part of head coach Dante Alinsunurin’s consistent rotation during the past games but the duo showed they can still contribute when their number gets called.
“Siguro ano lang, ang sabi ko sa players ko lang laging ready and continue lang yung ginagawa namin. Kahit sinong kalaban, dapat laging prepared,” said Alinsunurin.
De Leon was named the Best Player of the Game after ending the victory with 13 points built from six successful attacks alongside five blocks and two service aces.
Meanwhile, Revilla turned back the hands of time and recorded seven excellent digs and seven excellent receptions.
Sisi Rondina was still Choco Mucho’s top scorer as she unleashed 17 big points built from 14 successful attacks with two service aces.
It was all Choco Mucho from the get-go as their organized offensive attack proved to be too much for the struggling Gerflor franchise.
In all three sets, the Defenders failed to reach the 20-point mark and only combined for 44 total markers in nearly 40 minutes of action.
The Flying Titans will have a chance to end the preliminary round with a 10-game winning streak if they prevail over the Chery Tiggo Crossovers on December 2, 2023.