TURF OPEN. Kevin Montemayor (No. 14) is expected to lead Santa Rosa City when it battles Cignal in the Spikers' Turf Open Conference elimination round on Friday at the Paco Arena (Jan. 27, 2023). Signal will banner five-time MVP Mark Espejo against Santa Rosa. (Photo courtesy by Philippine Volleyball League)

MANILA – Cignal takes on Sta. Rosa City while Cotabato battles VNS Volleyball Club on Friday in the elimination round of the Spikers' Turf Open Conference at the Paco Arena.

Bannered by five-time league most valuable player (MVP) Marck Espejo and skipper Ysay Marasigan, the HD Spikers are favored to win against the Santa Rosa City Lions in their 4 p.m. match.

Cignal has acquired former PGJC-Navy setter EJ Casaña, Gadpray Aresgado and Alexis Faytaren to beef up its line-up.

Sta. Rosa City, led by Kevin Montemayor, Yoyong Mendoza and Harvey Quezada, is seeking to bounce back from lost its opening-day match to newcomer Iloilo-Ivy Tuason Photography last Sunday.

Jao Umandal, John Vic De Guzman and Jayvee Sumagaysay are expected to carry the fight for the Cotabato Spikers in their 6 p.m. duel with the VNS Griffins, who will rely on NCAA champion Mark Deximo from College of St. Benilde and Ron Medalla, who has recovered from an injury that sidelined him last year.

Games are telecast live on One Sports, One Sports+, Cignal Play and SMART Live Stream.

Meanwhile, Vanguard stunned National University, 25-18, 18-25, 26-24, 13-25, 15-10, last Wednesday to share the lead with Imus, Philippine Army and Philippine Air Force in the 11-team tournament organized by Sports Vision.

Razzel Palisoc scored 20 points while Ruvince Abrot and Joven Camaganakan contributed 15 and 13 points, respectively, for the Volley Hitters.

Mac Arvin Bandola led the Builders with 14 points and 14 excellent receptions while Leo Priolo Ordiales and Bryan James Jaleco chipped in 10 points each. (PNA)