April 14, 2024

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Jaja Santiago helps Saitama Ageo Medics go 2-0 in Japan V.League

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Saitama's Jaja Santiago in the Japan V.League. AGEO MEDICS PHOTO

Saitama’s Jaja Santiago in the Japan V.League. AGEO MEDICS PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines — Jaja Santiago shone anew as the Saitama Ageo Medics completed a weekend sweep of the NEC Red Rockets, 25-19, 25-23, 25-19, for an early lead in the 2022-23 Japan V.League season on Sunday at Todoroki Arena.

The 6-foot-5 middle blocker, once again, single-handedly outplayed the Red Rockets’ net defense with her season-best six blocks to highlight her 15-point effort.

Santiago, who is in her fifth season with Saitama, also drilled nine kills with a 40.9% attacking rate to help the Ageo Medics improve to 2-0.

The Philippine women’s volleyball team star had a nine-point performance in their 25-21, 25-19, 25-13 victory over NEC on opening day on Saturday.

Serbian import Sara Lozo still sat out but Yuka Sato led the Ageo Medics anew with 18 points built on 16 attacks, one block, and an ace. Momoko Niida chipped in 12 points, including two blocks, while Kyoko Aoyagi added nine markers.

Santiago and the Ageo Medics will face the PFU Blue Cats next weekend at Yume Arena Takata.

NEC star Sarina Koga, who missed the opening game, returned to action with 10 points, playing only in the last two sets but she couldn’t save her team from losing its second game.

Chinami Furuya led the Red Rockets with 13 points. Ueno added seven markers, as their previous top scorer Ayumi Yoshida, who had 14 points in the first game, only played in the first set and finished with two points.

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