Reigning champion Foton hardly showed any rust from a long hiatus and clobbered Generika, 25-13, 25-13, 25-17, to resume its winning ways on Thursday in the 2016 Asics Philippine Superliga (PSL) Grand Prix presented by PLDT Home Ultera at the FilOil Flying V Center in San Juan.
With all cylinders on fire, the Tornadoes had a smoking start and a sizzling finish to crush the Lifesavers in just 69 minutes of action in this prestigious tourney bankrolled by Mikasa, Mueller, Grand Sport and Senoh with TV5 as official broadcast partner.
With the win, Foton joined Petron on top of the leaderboard with 2-0 win-loss slate in this competition that also has Focus Athletics, KLab Cyscorpions, Foton, Petron and F2 Logistics as sponsors.
The standings, however, could still change as the tri-Activ Spikers are still clashing with an equally dangerous RC Cola-Army side at press time.
Middle blocker Maika Ortiz spearheaded the scoring parade, but FIVB Women’s Club World Championship veterans Jaja Santiago and Lindsay Stalzer asserted their dominance for the Tornadoes, who came up with a seventh place finish in the AVC Asian Women’s Club Championship last September.
Ortiz was a tower of power at the net, delivering four of her 11 points on blocks, while Santiago and Stalzer chipped in 10 points apiece as Foton dueled with Generika from start to finish.
“Although my team is not yet so ready, we still have great result for today’s game,” said Foton’s Serbian coach Moro Branislav. “This is really normal for Foton. We just need one good play to get it going.”
But Branislav, who also handled PSL-F2 Logistics Manila squad in the FIVB tourney last month, said his team will be severely tested in the next few games, especially with EJ Laure and Sisi Rondina getting busy with their university team.
“This is hard because Laure and Rondina did not train,” he said. “I don’t know how one professional coach work for two professional leagues at the same time and work for university league as well.”
Ria Meneses and Ukrainian Polina Liutikova were the lone bright spots on offense for Generika, which closed the gap from 8-14 to 14-19 before rolling over in the third set.
Meneses had eight points while Liutikova had seven hits for the Lifesavers, who remain winless in three starts.