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Ebon, Maraguinot fly high for NxLed in franchise debut rout of Gerflor

MANILA, Philippines, October 16 ------ The NxLed Chameleons rolled to a dreamlike PVL franchise debut, steamrolling the Gerflor Defenders, 25-18, 25-14, 25-19, to kick off the 2023 Second All-Filipino Conference at the Araneta Coliseum.

Former Far Eastern University standout Lycha Ebon, after being buried at the end of the Akari Chargers’ bench, led the blowout win with 14 points off 12 attacks and 2 blocks as NXLed scored its first franchise win, even beating Gerflor and Farm Fresh Foxies, who both have a one-conference head start. Fellow ex-Akari benchwarmer Jho Maraguinot also made the most of her chance to spread her wings in a starting role, chipping in 11 points on 9 attacks and 2 blocks, while former University of the East star Judith Abil scattered 6 points and 7 excellent digs in just two sets played. With all the makings of a rout taking shape after a second-set blowout, Gerflor kept the fight alive until the midway part of the third frame, forcing a 12-all tie.

However, NxLed dug deep for one last pivotal rally, sparking a 7-0 Maraguinot-led breakaway, 19-12, that the Defenders failed to bounce back from down the stretch. “As an NxLed coach, today’s target is [to have] everyone playing inside the court and we did it,” said the Chameleons’ Japanese head coach Taka Minowa. “In this week, we [focused more] on blocking, and more catching and kill points, and also defense. Today, we had good stops. We had broken the opponent’s side out system. We got a lot of breakpoint. That’s a good point in this match.”

No Gerflor player breached double-digit scoring in the sorry loss as Jenny Gaviola led with 9 points off 6 attacks, 2 blocks, and 1 ace.



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