Favorites Army, Home Ultera clash in V-League

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TOP SPIN  Perpetual top hitter Jamel Suyat (4) goes for a top spin against Mary Rosale of Coast Guard during their Shakey’s V-League Open Conference clash at The Arena in San Juan. The Lady Altas won, 25-16, 19-25, 25-22, 26-28, 15-11. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

TOP SPIN
Perpetual top hitter Jamel Suyat (4) goes for a top spin against Mary Rosale of Coast Guard during their Shakey’s V-League Open Conference clash at The Arena in San Juan. The Lady Altas won, 25-16, 19-25, 25-22, 26-28, 15-11. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Philippine Army and PLDT Home Ultera face off in what promises to be a slam-bang duel of title contenders with a share of the lead with idle Cagayan Valley at stake in the Shakey’s V-League Season 12 Open Conference at The Arena in San Juan City today.

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The keenly awaited match at 12:45 p.m.

PLDT, playing without ace Alyssa Valdez, plastered newcomer Baguio, 25-10, 25-16, 25-21, in last week’s inaugurals while Army kicked off its title-retention drive with a 25-8, 25-10, 25-11 spanking of Fourbees-Perpetual on Thursday.

That makes their duel worth watching with the power-hitting Valdez expected to suit up and join former league Most Valuable Player Suzanne Roces, Jaja Santiago, Laurence Ann Latigay and setter Rubie de Leon against the powerhouse cast of Army led by Rachel Ann Daquis, Jovelyn Gonzaga, Mary Jean Balse, Nerissa Bautista, Tina Salak, Honey Royse Tubino and the crisp-hitting Dindin Santiago-Manabat.

With star-studded crews, the match is tipped to go down-to-the-wire with both coaches expected to spring a surprise or two in cashing in on match-ups both in offense with their ace hitters and in net and floor defense with their blockers and diggers.

Meralco, meanwhile, hopes to flaunt its power game against unfancied Baguio in the other game at 2:45 p.m. with the Power Spikers also seeking a view of the top after opening their campaign with a 25-20, 25-21, 25-21 victory over the Navy side on Thursday.

The Top 4 teams after the elimination round will advance to the semifinals.

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