Petron Blaze Spiker Ces Molina admitted that the team wasn’t able to put on the finishing touches as they bowed down once again to the Foton Tornadoes in their Game 1 of the best-of-three series in the 2016 PSL GrandPrix Finals.
Petron was ahead 2 sets to none and almost everyone was actually waiting for the upset to happen. But the Tornadoes woke up just in time to stage another come-from-behind win, similar to what they did in the semifinals.
“Hindi ko rin masabi kung ano talaga nangyari. Pero siguro nga baka nag-relax talaga kami. Parang nawala kami lahat sa focus siguro dahil nga naka 2-0 set lead na kami,” Molina told FOX Sports.
“Siguro wala kaming panapos na puntos. Wala kaming panapos na set. Nakita ko na ang bagal naming gumalaw na parang ayan na nakadalawang set na. So the next set mas sagarin pa. Parang nawalan kami ng pang third set.”
It was an all-out war up to the third set as both teams were exchanging points in every rally. But when Foton stepped on the gas, Petron slowly drifted away and had a hard time coming back. And Molina said their defense was to be blamed.
“Siguro kailangan namin na mas tibayan pa yung mga kulang namin. Yung depensa namin, kung pano namin ma-stop yung points ng kalaban. Kunyari 3 points na sila na lamang, kailangan namin ma-stop yun. Dapat mas eager kaming manalo sa next game namin.”
Stephanie Niemer scored 32 points while Serena Warner and Molina contributed 10 points apiece. But even with 3 Blaze Spikers ended up in double digits, it was negated by Foton’s imports Lindsay Stalzer and Ariel Usher, who combined for 49 big points.
Molina admitted that their locals needs to step up more to be able to stop Foton’s dynamic duo.
“Yung game kasi na to talagang tinulungan naman namin yung imports. Nag-effort naman yung bawat isa sa team. Talagang ganun siguro na may nananalo tsaka may natatalo. Di naman pwedeng parehas kami manalo,” Molina said.
“Yung imports namin ginawa naman nila yung part nila. Siguro yung locals mas dapat pang dagdagan pa namin yung pagtulong sa imports namin next game,” she added.
The former San Beda standout urged the Blaze Spikers to recover immediately and move on from game 1. She said that although they may have been feeling a little low, they have to accept the loss to be able to come back stronger in time for game 2.
“Sa next game kailangan bawiin namin. Syempre hindi namin pwedeng dalhin na low morale kami sa next game namin kasi papanget yung lalaruin namin. Dapat mas matanggap namin yung pagkatalo namin,” she said.
And with acceptance, Molina hopes Petron can bounce back on Saturday and extend the series to a rubbermatch next Tuesday. – By Joyce Palad
Follow this writer on Twitter: @joyceepalad