The Filipinos are aiming to end their 18-year medal drought
The Philippine women’s volleyball team dominated Cambodia during their opening match in Group B at the Indoor Olympic Stadium in Phnom Penh on Tuesday.
As the host of the 32nd edition of the SEA Games, Cambodia fielded a women’s volleyball team for the first time. The home team only scored 4 out of 15, with the remaining 11 points coming from the visiting squad’s errors.
Alyssa Valdez, the team captain, did not play due to her ongoing recovery from a right knee injury. But, her teammates, Jema Galanza and Tots Carlos, and national team player Mylene Paat, formed a strong combination. They taught the home team a lesson.
The returning setter Jia De Guzman gave the team brilliant plays. Middle blockers Dell Palomata and Cherry Nunag also shone in the game.
National team coach Jorge Souza de Brito expressed his satisfaction with the team’s performance.
“I think the Philippines [did] the job. Serves, receives. They really committed to it, to just push the opponent, to stay in different levels. Also, it’s hard to play when the difference is so much, but our team is really good today. They kept the pressure, and I like this,” he said.
Although the Filipino fans at the venue chanted “Alyssa! Alyssa!” during the game, Carlos and Galanza stepped up in her absence.
The team faces a challenging match against reigning silver medalist Vietnam. The Vietnamese players swept Singapore 25-13, 25-8, 25-7 at an earlier game.
De Brito said his team respects Cambodia despite being a first-timer in the regional women’s volleyball tournament. He added that the team is in the right direction, using their young players to compete against the strongest opponents.
The women’s national team dominated their opponent from the start. Cambodia only got all its five points from the Philippines’ errors.
The nationals continued to punish the home team in the second set. But the Cambodians scored their first point in the SEA Games women’s volleyball after Horm Ravy nailed an ace to tie the frame at 2-all.
Yet, the Filipino Spikers continued their dominance. Carlos finished the set with two consecutive kills for a 13-2 spread. The team is now one step closer to their goal of ending their medal drought.
Banner Image Dani Sison