All eyes on Valdez as Creamline debuts vs Perlas
Alyssa Valdez returns to action on home soil after a much-hyped stint in Thailand as Creamline battles Perlas as part of an explosive women’s triple-bill kicking off the Premier Volleyball League on Sunday at Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan.
Valdez, the four-time Shakey’s V-League conference MVP, will banner the Cool Smashers, who are out to make an impact with a squad that also includes Thai reinforcement Kuttika Kaewpin and American Laura Schaudt.
Thai coach Tai Bundit will be calling the shots for Creamline, which also boasts a formidable local crew composed of Aerieal Patnongon, Coleen Bravo, James Suyat, Janet Serafica, Ivy Remulla, Pau Soriano, Joyce Palad, Aurea Racraquin and Jonalyn Ibisa.
“It’s a new team for Creamline,” said Valdez, who made history as the first Filipino to play in the tough Thai League early this year. “We had a short period of time to prepare, but we’re happy to be under Coach Tai (Bundit), Coach Oliver (Almadro), and all the Ateneo coaches. We’re just really looking forward to a good showing.”
The Cool Smashers will have their hands full against the Perlas Spikers, who, interestingly, are led by some of Valdez’s former teammates at Ateneo like Dzi Gervacio, Mae Tajima, Amy Ahomiro, Jem Ferrer and Ella de Jesus.
Veterans Sue Roces and Sasa Devanadera are also in the fold along with reinforcements Rupia Inck and Naoko Hashimoto and former University of the Philippines standouts Kat Bersola and Nicole Tiamzon.
“The core of the squad has so much experience and we welcome the addition of Kat and Nicole, they will give this team energy,” said coach Jerry Yee.
BaliPure clashes with Air Force at 2 p.m., before the Pocari Sweat-Power Smashers battle at 4 p.m.
Three-time NCAA MVP Grethcel Soltones will spearhead the Water Defenders, along with import Jennifer Keddy of the US and Thai veteran Jeng Bualee.
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