Van Sickle leads and outclasses Petro Gazz in the Army PNVF

Feb 7, 2024

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MANILA, Philippines – The grand stage of the Rizal Memorial Coliseum set the scene for the commencement of the Philippine National Volleyball Federation (PNVF) Champions League, and Petro Gazz left an indelible mark with a commanding 25-11, 25-19, 25-19 victory over the Philippine Army. The Angels, backed by sponsors such as PLDT, Ayala Land, Nuvali, Cignal, One Sports, One Sports+, Mikasa, Senoh, Foton, the Philippine Olympic Committee, and the Philippine Sports Commission, exhibited their prowess in a spectacular display.

Leading the charge was the sensational Filipino-American talent, Brooke Van Sickle, making her Philippine debut. Van Sickle’s stellar performance, amassing 16 points through 14 hits, a block, and an ace, showcased her prowess and marked her arrival on the local volleyball scene. The collaboration with new Japanese coach Koji Tsuzurabara further strengthened Petro Gazz’s strategy, paving the way for an impressive victory over five opposing teams in three sets, culminating in a quick 1-0 lead.

Assisting Van Sickle were stalwart players Nicole Tiamzon, Myla Pablo (making a comeback), and KC Galdones, contributing nine, eight, and seven points respectively. The team’s well-rounded effort, with all eight players making significant contributions, highlighted their cohesion and dominance throughout the match. The Angels maintained control until a tense third set, where they had to navigate a narrow 17-15 deficit to secure the win.

Despite the limited preparation time—just over a week—since taking over from Timmy Sto, Coach Tsuzurabara expressed satisfaction with his team’s debut performance. He specifically acknowledged Brooke Van Sickle for her leadership on the court, recognizing her impact on the team’s success.

Looking ahead, Petro Gazz faces Cignal in their next encounter on Tuesday. Cignal, bolstered by the additions of Dawn Macandili and Jov Fernandez to their roster, presented a formidable challenge. At the time of this report, Cignal was engaged in a contest against Chery Tiggo, led by new captain Aby Maraño, in the second game of the PNVF Champions League opener.

As the tournament unfolds, Petro Gazz’s early triumph has set the stage for an exciting and competitive journey in the PNVF Champions League, with the team aiming to maintain its momentum and secure a prominent position in the pursuit of volleyball excellence.

In the much-anticipated return of the Philippine Army to the volleyball scene after a year-long absence from the PVL, Nene Bautista emerged as the lone standout, contributing a commendable 10 points to her team’s effort. Despite the challenges faced by the team, Bautista’s performance served as a bright spot, showcasing resilience and skill in the face of competition.

Adding to the competitive landscape of the women’s segment of the tournament, the College of St. Benilde entered the fray as the reigning NCAA champion and PNVF Challenge Cup titleholder. This formidable squad, set to make their debut on Monday against the Philippine Army, promises to bring an extra layer of excitement to the competition.

Fans and enthusiasts eagerly anticipate the live broadcasts of the tournament on One Sports and One Sports+, with live transmission on Pilipinas Live, offering a front-row seat to the thrilling matches. Furthermore, Cignal is slated to broadcast the tournament later, ensuring that fans can catch the action and witness the dynamic performances of these teams as they vie for supremacy in the PNVF Champions League. As the tournament unfolds, the convergence of experienced teams and emerging talents sets the stage for intense and captivating volleyball battles, promising a spectacle for enthusiasts and supporters alike.

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