Jaja Santiago, JT Marvelous beat Jia De Guzman, Denso in Japan V.League
MANILA, Philippines — Jaja Santiago scored 12 points as JT Marvelous overcame Jia De Guzman and Denso Airybees in five sets, 23-25, 23-25, 25-16, 25-21, 17-15, in the 2023-24 V.League on Saturday.
Santiago got the better of De Guzman in their first-ever showdown in Japan as the JT Marvelous middle blocker drilled eight kills and four blocks to keep her team unbeaten in five games.
De Guzman, the eight-time Premier Volleyball League Best Setter, provided the spark off the bench and played in the third and fourth sets as Denso dropped to a 1-2 record.
Santiago and De Guzman, former Philippine national women’s volleyball teammates, last faced each other in the 2021 PVL bubble with the 6-foot-5 middle blocker leading Chery Tiggo to its first pro crown after beating Creamline in the finals in Ilocos Norte.
JT Marvelous fought back from a two-set deficit as Annie Drews willed her team back with 30 points including two blocks. Mizuki Tanaka had 11 points to support Drews and Santiago.
Minami Nakamoto carried the cudgels of Denso with 19 points. Sayaka Yokota had 17 points including three blocks, while Rosamaria Montibeller and Haruna Yamashita added 11 markers.
JT Marvelous takes on defending champion NEC Red Rockets on Sunday, while the Airybees battle Toyota Body Queenseis.