Petro Gazz keeps PVL Reinforced Conference throne

Petro Gazz's Lindsey Vander Waide scores against Cignal's Ces Molina (7) and Ria Meneses during the PVL Reinforced Conference finals Game 2 at the Philsports Arena in Pasig, December 6, 2022. Photo by Rio Deluvio
Petro Gazz's Lindsey Vander Waide scores against Cignal's Ces Molina (7) and Ria Meneses during the PVL Reinforced Conference finals Game 2 at the Philsports Arena in Pasig, December 6, 2022. Photo by Rio Deluvio

Petro Gazz flaunted its might to crush Cignal, 25-17, 22-25, 25-12, 25-22, in Game 2 of the finals to extend its reign in the Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference Tuesday night at the Philsports Arena in Pasig City.

American Lindsey Vander Weide brandished the same aggressiveness and precision-hitting she displayed all tournament long to pace the Angels in completing a best-of-three series sweep.

Petro Gazz successfully defended the title it won back in 2019 at the expense of Creamline before the conference was shelved for two years due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Vander Weide, who was named Finals Most Valuable Player and Best Foreign Guest Player, led three other Angels in double figures with 19 points anchored on 16 kills. Remy Palma wreaked havoc at the net with five kill blocks on her way to finishing with 18 markers while Myla Pablo scored 16 of her 17 points on attacks including the last two kills that sealed the championship.

MJ Phillips added 12 points while Djanel Cheng tallied 26 excellent sets for Petro Gazz, which staved off Cignal's last ditched fight back in the fourth frame.

The Angels drew first blood, 25-21, 27-25, 37-25, last Thursday in the series opener.

The HD Spikers avoided another match sweep, putting up a gallant stand in the second set as it broke a 20-20 deadlock with a 4-1 rally to move at set point, 24-21, before Phillips saved a point. Rachel Anne Daquis ended the set with a kill.

However, Cignal's second set escape was nothing but a minor hiccup that only delayed Petro Gazz's date with destiny.

Ces Molina posted 14 points off nine kills, four aces and a kill block and added nine excellent receptions while American Tai Bierria had 12 markers for the HD Spikers. Roselyn Doria  got 11 points for Cignal, which ended its season with a runner-up finish after claiming bronze in the Open and Invitational Conferences.

Meanwhile, Mylene Paat of Chery Tiggo was named Most Valuable Player and Best Opposite Spiker during the presentation of individual awards.

Creamline's Alyssa Valdez and Pablo were the Best Outside Hitters, Jia de Guzman of the bronze medalists Cool Smashers bagged her seventh Best Setter award while Crossovers defense specialist Buding Duremdes got the Best Libero recognition. Phillips and Doria took the Best Middle Blocker awards.

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