Dominant Creamline rips Ateneo for title
Packing firepower on all fronts, Creamline on Saturday made short work of overachieving Motolite-Ateneo, 25-20, 25-20, 25-15, to capture the Premier Volleyball League Open Conference title at Batangas City Coliseum.
Alyssa Valdez, Michelle Gumabao and Risa Sato fed off the splendid playmaking of Jia Morado as the Cool Smashers drubbed the Lady Eagles to capture a second straight championship and give Thai coach Tai Bundit a warm send-off.
“It was a great effort by the whole team,” said Gumabao who scored 12 points firing. “Our inspiration was coach Tai, because we are not sure if he’s coming back, this is for him.”
Bundit had previously announced that he’s returning to his homeland to take care of his family, leaving a legacy that included two titles with, interestingly, the Ateneo Lady Eagles in the UAAP.
Ateneo has nothing to be ashamed off despite the straight sets defeat as it made heads turn in this commercial league. The Lady Eagles got this far by beating full-pledged club teams by displaying raw skill and strong character.
Valdez, delighting her provincemates with her usual flair, was fittingly named the Most Valuable Player on top of copping the First Best Open Spiker award.
Earlier, BanKo Perlas claimed third place after thumping PetroGazz, 25-18, 26-24, 25-21.
Valdez wound up with 13 points, Sato finished with 10, while Morado had 39 excellent sets.
Aside from serving as the pillar of the Cool Smashers’ superb campaign, Valdez topped the scoring list, producing 280 points, 231 coming off attacks.
Her picture-perfect spikes also proved to be the most accurate, converting a 40.38 percent success rate. Valdez also topped the service department with 34 total aces.
The national team stalwart also stood out defensively with an average 3.5 excellent digs per frame, the best among nonliberos.
Morado was Best Setter, her third such citation, while teammate Jem Galanza was Second Best Open Spiker.
Motolite-Ateneo’s Maddie Madayag was First Best Middle Blocker, with the Second Best Middle Blocker going to BanKo’s Kat Bersola.
Kat Tolentino of Motolite-Ateneo was adjudged Best Opposite Spiker, while Cienne Cruz of PetroGazz was Best Libero.