MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine women’s volleyball team failed to reach the podium anew after a disappointing 21-25, 25-22, 19-25, 21-25 loss to Indonesia in the third-place match of the 31st Southeast Asian Games on Saturday. Kwang Nin Gymnasium in Vietnam.
After a 1-2-match deficit, the Filipino Spikers took an 18-12 lead in the fourth set with Jaza Santiago, Alyssa Valdez and Milen Jute and tried to force a decider to save their bronze medal hopes.
However, Kat Tolentino refused to extend the night’s Ulandari match time before stopping the bleeding as she took her team’s 10 missing points 22-18 lead.
Ulandari kept his team at match point 24-20. Jute saved one point but Megawati nailed a partisan bronze-clinching attack that put Indonesia on the podium of the SEA Games since 2007.
The Indonesians shed tears of joy and hugged each other after returning to a stunning fourth set, while Filipino spies were filled with the pain of defeat after a disappointing finish in the Vietnam Games that extended their medal drought since 2005.
Pertui, Amalia Nabila and Wilda Sugandi led the Indonesian team as they repeated their bronze medal win against the Philippines at the 2019 SEA Games.
Nandita Salsabila also played a key role, giving the final touches to take advantage of the 2-1 match in the third set.
Santiago, again, led the way for the Philippine women’s volleyball team, which also had the courageous efforts of Pat, Valdez and Ces Molina.
The women’s national team not only won its opening match against Malaysia in straight sets but lost four games in a row, securing another fourth place for the second consecutive biennial meeting.
The Philippine team, which trained in Brazil under new coach Jorge de Brito and saw Santiago emerge as the best blocker in the Japan V League and Jute as the top scorer in the volleyball Thai League, have yet to end their 17-year medal drought.
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