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BaliPure opens title defense

Games Today
(Philsports Arena, Pasig City)
12:30 p.m. – IEM vs Champion (m)
4 p.m. – Coast Guard vs UP (w)
6 p.m. – UST vs BaliPure (w)

BaliPure begins its title campaign without Alyssa Valdez in its roster when it clashes with pacesetter University of Santo Tomas today in the Shakey’s V-League Season 13 Reinforced Conference at the Philsports Arena in Pasig City.

Match is set at 6 p.m. with the Water Defenders, composed mostly of former Ateneo standouts, eager to display their strength despite the loss of the volleyball superstar.

Valdez played for BaliPure in the Open Conference early this year before Bureau of Customs acquired her for this conference.

But the Water Defenders have Americans, ace setter Kaylee Manns and Katharine Morrell, to fuel their bid.

“They are very aggressive on the court so I hope we can become more aggressive also. There’s a lot of potential in our team and I hope we can get that out as the conference goes,” said Amy Ahomiro, one of the veteran players of BaliPure.

Steering the squad along with Ahomiro and the American imports are former back-to-back MVP Sue Roces, Charo Soriano, Ella De Jesus, Dzi Gervacio and Sasa Devanadera.

But expect UST to be a tough nut to crack after residing early at the helm with victories against Air Force and Coast Guard.

The Tigresses, who are playing without foreign support, will rely on EJ Laure, Chloe Cortez and Carla Sandoval after leading the squad at the attack line.

The España-based crew is also expected to strengthen its defense with Ria Meneses taking charge behind the net against the power-hitting BaliPure squad.

Meanwhile, University of the Philippines and Coast Guard aim to bounce back from early losses when they collide at 4 p.m.

The Coast Guard Lady Dolphins have yet to find their rhythm after bowing to Laoag (25-8, 25-15, 25-16) and UST (25-16, 25-10, 25-23), while the Lady Maroons are still licking their wounds from a straight-set 25-23, 25-18, 25-22 defeat against Customs.