The Shakey’s V-League: Schedule of Games (Semis/Finals)

The Elimination Round has ended and only 5 teams remain. The no.1 spot went to San Sebastian with a 6-1 record. Having the same 6-1 record but with a lower quotient, Lyceum was second. No.3 went to UST with 4-3. No. 4 to Ateneo with 3-4. And the last spot no. 5 went to De La Salle with 4-3. Too bad Adamson did not make it.

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    The Quarter Final round is fast approaching and remaining teams who have not qualified for the semis have one more week to change their guest players, if ever they really want to boost their campaign in this conference’s edition of the Shakey’s V-League. The tentative start of the Quarter Finals is next week, May 4, which might feature an Ateneo vs La Salle opening. La Salle, meaning the University of Saint La Salle Lady Stingers who will be coming from Visayas together with University of San Jose – Recoletos Lady Jaguars.

    Jaroensri Bualee, a name familiar to almost all Shakey’s V-League Fanatics, is back again to play for San Sebastian College – Recoletos Lady Stags. The Season 4, Conference 1 MVP is fresh from a tournament in Vietnam as Guest Player. It is no question that she will once again play as Open Spiker for the Recto-based team and will add more power to the already-powerful San Sebastian spikers. Current Guest Player, Suzanne Roces has RP Team commitment and has expressed that it is fine to give way as long as the team will benefit from it. Phee Jang Bualee will have Luann Latigay, Cheng Ancheta, Sasa Devanadera and Jinni Mondejar as support in terms of power and scoring.

    Lithawat Kesinee meanwhile, is taking a summer break from her masters in Rattana Bundit University and has expressed to help the Ateneo de Manila University Lady Eagles once more in getting the first-ever V-League crown. It is no question too that Phee Nok Kesinee will play Middle as that is one of the positions that Ateneo really needs in their quest for the title, a legit middle blocker. The Season 4, Conference 2 MVP is known for her blocking prowess and running attacks. Jindarat Kanchana, their preliminary round guest player, went home to Thailand for personal reasons. Along with Phee Nok Kesinee, expect strong support from league’s leading MVP candidate Charo Soriano, Karla Bello, Kara Acevedo and Patti Taganas.

    The Quarter Finals will follow the same format as the preliminaries however instead of a two round robin format, the Quarters will only have one round robin which makes the games more “important” and “do-or-die”. Expect the six teams namely Ateneo de Manila, Lyceum, Far Eastern U, Benilde, La Salle and San Jose to really give out their best and to give us exciting games as four teams will be eliminated after the Quarter Finals round. The top two will of course, move on to the Semis. However, if any team wins three out of five games, they will have the right to challenge the second seed after the Quarter Finals even if they are not among the top two. Psychological advantage is with the top two teams of the Quarter Finals since momentum will be on their side while the outright Semi Finalists Adamson and San Sebastian take a two-week break.

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    MANILA, Philippines — Sports Vision director Rhea Navarro can hardly wait for the next phase of the Shakey’s V-League.

    Two topnotch teams from the Visayas — CESAFI champion University of San Jose Recoletos in Cebu and reigning PRISAA champion University of St. La Salle in Bacolod—will join the four Metro Manila teams that will not qualify outright to the semifinal round.

    Sports Vision is the organizer of the V-League which is currently in the homestretch of the elimination round of the first conference.

    * * *

    “This is the very first time provincial teams will be participating in the V-League. USLS, which boasts pretty and talented Fil-Am Marcelina Yandall, is coached by former PVF (Philippine Volleyball Federation) president Roger Banzuela,” Rhea said.

    “USJR, on the other hand, is mentored by Grace Antigua, one of the best volleyball players ever produced by our country. A SEA Games gold medalist, Grace was a member of the RP women’s team that brought home three gold medals in l981, l985 and 1987. The last time the country won a gold in the SEA Games was in 1993.”

    According to Rhea, Cebu’s USJR is currently on the lookout for a guest player who will reinforce the team.

    “Actually, they don’t have to look far. Grace can coach and play at the same time. She can be a volleyball player-coach,” Rhea said.

    * * *

    But active playing could be farthest from Grace’s mind. She has been pushing for bosom buddy Thelma Barina, a member of the l993 SEA Games gold medal team, to be the guest player. Thelma is reputed to be the best lady spiker of Southeast Asia during her time.

    Although she is probably now in her mid-forties, Grace believes it would be a good idea for the young volleybelles to play with and against Thelma because they will learn a lot from her. In spite of her age, Grace said, Thelma can still give budding stars a run for their money.

    USLS will be led by Teresa Valdez, Sheryl June Denila, Laedy Cepeda, Patty Orendain, Realyn Valeriano, Kay and Loverich Aplasca, April Hingpit, Era Shane Celis, Sheryl Silva, Je-Ann Ledesma, Kristalien Lopez and Yandall while USJR will parade Genie Sabas, Michelle Simbajon, Genesis and Perlyn Soliva, Avegale Getuaban, Rachel Singson, Sarah Miculob, Princess Canda, Cristy Laroga, Angela Lacno, Mary Joy Bonita, Gwendolyn Gutang and Erika Verano.

    Players of both teams have managed to impress Shakey’s marketing director Meggie Jose, who recently returned from the Visayas to personally look over the two teams. She said the Southern volleybelles are tall, sexy, good looking and talented.

    She has photos to prove her claim.

    The quarterfinals of the Shakey’s V-League starts on May 4 at The Arena in San Juan.

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