Customs, BaliPure seek last 2 semis slots

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Foiled in her attacks, Customs’ Alyssa Valdez goes for a tip against the solid BaliPure defense put up by Amy Ahomiro (16) and import Kaylee Manns during their Shakey’s V-League Reinforced Conference clash. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Foiled in her attacks, Customs’ Alyssa Valdez goes for a tip against the solid BaliPure defense put up by Amy Ahomiro (16) and import Kaylee Manns during their Shakey’s V-League Reinforced Conference clash. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Customs and BaliPure try to book the last two semifinal berths as they take on Coast Guard and Laoag, respectively, in the Shakey’s V-League Season 13 Reinforced Conference at the Philsports Arena in Pasig.

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The Transformers missed a chance to barge into the Final Four in their last outing, dropping a stinging 22-25, 22-25, 14-25 defeat to the Pocari Sweat Lady Warriors last Saturday.

But Alyssa Valdez and company are fancied to finally clinch the win against the winless Coast Guard side in their 4 p.m. encounter with the Transformers looking for their fourth victory against two losses and join UST and Pocari in the next round of the league sponsored by Shakey’s.

Valdez, who leads the league in the MVP race being the best in scoring and serving, No. 2 in spiking and seventh in digs, is again expected to lead Customs charge but the two-time league MVP and many-time UAAP MVP hopes to draw solid backup from Thai reinforcements Kanjana Kuthaisong and setter Nattanicha Jaisaen.

“We just lost focus in that game (against Pocari) but I’m confident we could recover from it,” said Customs coach Sherwin Meneses.

BaliPure, meanwhile, is on a roll, sweeping its next three games after losing to UST last Oct. 8. The Purest Water Defenders’ 25-13, 25-23, 25-17 win over the UP Lady Maroons last Saturday put them closer to a dream semis stint in the season-ending conference of the league backed by Mikasa as official ball and Accel as official outfitter.

That also makes BaliPure the slight favorite over embattled Laoag, which could only churn out a 2-4 card, in their 6 p.m. encounter to be aired live over ABS-CBN Sports + Action Channel 17 or 23 and via streaming on www.sports.abs-cbn.com and via streaming on www.v-league,ph, according to the organizing Sports Vision.

The Customs-Coast Guard match will be shown on a delayed basis.

“We’ve put extra effort in improving our team chemistry and we’re happy we’re making progress,” said BaliPure skipper Charo Soriano.

Semifinalist Air Force and Instituto Estetico Manila, meanwhile, tangle in the Spikers’ Turf Season 2 Third Conference with the former gunning for its fourth straight win and the latter looking for its third victory against a loss.

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