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Duel for No. 1 semis

Games Today
(The Arena, San Juan City)
5 p.m. – RC Cola-Army vs Cignal
7 p.m. – Foton vs Petron

Petron, Foton clash for top seed.

Heavyweights Foton and Petron battle for the top semifinal spot today when they square off in the final preliminary playdate of the 2016 Philippine Superliga Grand Prix at The Arena in San Juan City.

Match is at 7 p.m. with the defending champion Tornadoes and the multi-titled Tri-Activ Spikers set to untangle themselves from an 8-1 win-loss record logjam.

It was a rematch of sorts for Foton and Petron after clashing in last year’s finals duel where the Tornadoes eventually clinched the title.

But Petron, which boasts of two titles in previous conferences including a 13-0 title sweep last year’s All-Filipino Conference, is out to reclaim its throne with its vastly-improved lineup and strong foreign reinforcements.

“We will prepare hard for this game, knowing that Foton will be in full force,” said Petron Coach Shaq Delos Santos.

Delos Santos has his eyes on American import Stephanie Niemer in setting the court ablaze with her powerful spikes and strong blocks, along with fellow import Serena Warner and a formidable cast of local players in Ces Molina, Aiza Pontillas, Jen Reyes, and CJ Rosario.

But Foton, which is coming off back-to-back triumphs against RC Cola-Army and Cignal, can match Petron’s strength in both ends.

The Tornadoes has power-hitting Ariel Usher and Lindsay Stalzer, and a dependable local lineup in Rhea Dimaculangan, Maika Ortiz, and Jaja Santiago.

The 6-foot-4 Santiago, who missed a few games after joining National University’s training camp in Japan, is actually the core of Foton’s local lineup after erupting for 30 points in their 25-20, 20-25, 29-27, 21-25, 15-7 victory over RC Cola-Army.

RC Cola-Army and Cignal, in the first game, collide in the 5 p.m. appetizer.

Meanwhile, F2 Logistics ended its campaign in the preliminaries on a sizzling note as it downed RC Cola-Army, 25-13, 25-21, 25-11, in the second game.

Imports Hayley Spelman and Sydney Kemper carried the offensive cudgels to tow the Cargo Movers to their seventh win in 10 outings.

With the win, the Cargo Movers formally claimed the third spot, booking a one-game duel with either Cignal or Generika in the playoffs.