By Niko Bulaon
It was a September night when the St. Paul Warriors and Guam High Panthers were on the verge of ending the first set; at a score of 24-20, the power goes out, cancelling the game to be played on another night.
The Warriors defeated the Panthers in three nail-biting sets, 25-20, 25-16, 26-24, at the St. Paul gym Friday night.
“We have really good talent,” said the Warriors Joylyn Pangilinan. “We helped each other, we encouraged each other, and we won it.”
At the start of the make-up game, the Warriors took the first set after a mistake by the Panthers. But with the second set rolling, the Panthers took a quick lead behind three aces from Kayla Blend. A kill by Tiffani Unsiog put the Panthers up by six, 9-3.
Multiple errors by Guam High had the lead slowing decreasing, but a kill by Blend and an ace by Alexis McGuire put their team up by 10, 16-6. The Warriors tried to stay in the game, but miscommunications and unforced errors gave the Panthers easy points.
With the score at 22-13, a kill and two aces by Warriors Joylyn Pangilinan gave her team hopes for a comeback, but a kill by McGuire shut down her opponents’ run and ended the second set, forcing a third set to be played.
Wasting no time, Warriors Kindra Young handed her opponents six consecutive aces, putting her team in the lead 7-0. But an untimely error put the Panthers on the board and a kill by Ha’ani Limtiaco sparked a run. Several errors by both teams kept the Warriors in the lead, but another kill by McGuire tied the game at 11-11.
The Warriors planned to stay ahead, but another miscommunication put Guam High in the lead for the first time in the set. After several lead changes, three back-to-back aces from Elizabeth Reyes put the Panthers on top, 20-18. An ace by Laura Raymond and an unanswered kill by Justine Yeban tied the game yet again, 21-21. But three errors by St. Paul put the Panthers one point away from the win, 24-21.
On the verge of taking the set and the win, a Panthers’ error causes a quick comeback by the Warriors. Three consecutive aces by Warriors Cara Young put the Warriors in the lead and ended the game with an ecstatic crowd.
“Our motivation for volleyball; we make no ball drop,” commented Pangilinan.
Pangilinan led the Warriors with three saves, two kills, and two aces with the help of teammate Kindra Young with eight aces.
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