June 23, 2018, 10:34 am
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Generika spikers keep Smart winless

IMUS CITY. — Generika-Ayala was forced to thread the eye of a needle before eking out a thrilling 25-21, 25-23, 23-25, 22-25, 15-11 victory over Smart Thursday in the Chooks to Go-Philippine Superliga Grand Prix at the Imus Sports Center here.

Darlene Ramdin came through with some crucial hits before the Giga Hitters crumbled under pressure in the club tourney bankrolled by Isuzu, UCPB Gen and Rebisco with ESPN5 as official broadcast partner.

A returning import from Trinidad and Tobago, Ramdin erupted for 23 kills and three blocks for 26 points while American Symone Hayden chipped in 21 points for the Lifesavers, who needed two hours and nine minutes to overcome the tough Smart squad led by the prolific Gyselle Silva.

Silva, the hard-hitting former Cuban national player, was again her deadly self as she knocked down 30 kills and three aces for a conference-high 35 points while Trivunovic added 22 hits for the upset-conscious Giga Hitters.

But her efforts went to naught as she failed to get enough support from the locals, especially in the crucial deciding set where Ramdin and the Lifesavers went for the kill.

“I just told them not to get pressured. Just follow the instruction and treat this match as if this is just a practice game,” said Generika-Ayala coach Sherwin Meneses shortly after his team’s first victory in the league that also has Senoh, Mikasa, Asics, LGR and Grand Sport as technical sponsors.

“We’re not actually concerned with the game, we’re more concerned with our improvement as a team. I’m glad that we had some improvements and we managed to apply everything we learned in practice,” added Meneses, whose squad kept Smart winless in five games.

With the Giga Hitters breathing down their neck in the fifth set at 10-11, Ramdin connected on a booming kill from the right before Angeli Araneta delivered a quick hit to make it 13-11.

Ramdin then unleashed another attack for match point while the Giga Hitters committed a reception error in the ensuing play. 
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