Army rips Coast Guard, nears sweep


Games Saturday 12:45 p.m. – PLDT vs KIA Forte 3 p.m. – Army vs UP

Army overcame a fierce third set challenge put up by a gritty Coast Guard and hammered out a 25-4, 25-12, 33-31 victory yesterday to move within a win from sweeping the Shakey's V-League Season 12-Reinforced Conference elims at The Arena in San Juan City.

Former league MVP Jovelyn Gonzaga erupted with a gamebest 20 hits, including 17 attack points, while Mary Remy Joy Palma and Honey Royse Tubino combined for 24 markers as the fancied Lady Troopers rolled to their fourth straight victory in the season-ending conference of the league sponsored by Shakey’s and presented by PLDT Home Ultera.

What made the win impressive was Army did it without ace setter Tina Salak and hitter Abi Marano, who sat out the game to rest in a game they were heavily favored to win.

But Palma and Tubino stepped up and scored 13 and 11 hits, respective­ly, while Sarah Jane Gonzales picked up the slack from Salak by producing a career-high 37 excellent sets to clinch the Shakey's Best Player of the Game honors in the tournament backed by Mikasa and Accel and organized by Sports Vision.

"The whole team stepped up and didn't lose composure, particular­ly in the third when we almost lost the set," said Army coach Kungfu Reyes.

Kia Forte finally nailed the elusive win after dropping its first three matches, holding off a skidding University of the Philippine­s side, 25-22, 19-25, 2515, 25-19, to keep its flickering semis hopes alive.

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