Generika Ayala made a grand return to the semifinals of the Philippine Superliga (PSL), ending a three-year drought in the process.
This is the first time that the one-time PSL champion appeared in the semifinals since 2014, where they bagged gold and silver finishes in the All-Filipino and Reinforced conferences, respectively. After a successful year, the franchise went on a break in 2015, giving way to the likes of Foton and F2 Logistics to take build their own dynasty.
Generika made a comeback in 2016, but their campaigns for the last three years were not as successful as when they were still the queens of PSL back in 2014. The Lifesavers settled at the lower half of the standings and despite being coined as the darkhorse of the league, they almost always fell short of a podium finish.
The squad has undergone several retooling, from keeping Kath Arado and Riri Meneses in their roster, to acquiring the services of ex-Foton spikers Angeli Araneta, Patty Orendain and Fiola Ceballos, to tapping former Petron players April Ross Hingpit and Bang Pineda.
And after years of hard work, frustration and non-stop perseverance, they are finally back on top as they are one of the four remaining teams in contention of the highly-coveted PSL All Filipino Conference 2018.
— kenzooow (@theKenzo_Olii) November 10, 2018
Now that they have entered the semifinals, Generika Ayala is expected to go all out as it also aims to arrest a three-year title drought. They need to pass through the semifinals first, and their road to the Finals will not be easy.
Their semifinals opponent, the powerhouse F2 Logistics, is touting a twice-to-beat incentive, making the climb more difficult for the Lifesavers. But if their first round encounter, where Generika Ayala stunned F2 Logistics in four sets, was any indication, they have what it takes pull off another upset against the Cargo Movers.
Orendain, Araneta and Ceballos formed one of the best wing spikers trio this conference, with Orendain topping the scoring charts after first round. Meneses and Mikaella Lopez are also tipped to lead from the middle, and while Arado provide the defensive cudgels from the floor, Hingpit will run Generika Ayala’s offense.
They are definitely ripe for another trophy.
This is arguably the perfect conference for the Lifesavers to win another title, and they have what it takes to advance to the Finals, but the question is: will they?
Generika Ayala and F2 Logistics will clash on Tuesday, 4:15 p.m. at the Muntinlupa Sports Complex.