PVL: Creamline claims Invitational title, dominates KingWhale Taipei
MANILA, Philippines — Creamline showed its lethal form to dominate KingWhale Taipei, 25-21, 25-19, 25-8, and claim the Premier Volleyball League Invitational Conference championship Sunday night at Mall of Asia Arena.
After fielding their bench players in their semifinal match-up that resulted in a five-set loss three days ago, Alyssa Valdez was hardly affected by her left ankle sprain last game as she joined hands with Tots Carlos and Jema Galanza to deliver the Cool Smashers’ second straight championship this season in just an hour and 26 minutes.
Creamline earned its fifth PVL title in seven finals appearances after making quick work of the Taiwanese club team, which swept the four-game semis.
Displaying their real deadly form, the Cool Smashers unleashed a formidable 20-5 spread in the third set and never looked back as Ced Domingo pushed her team at match point before Valdez nailed the championship-clinching kill.
Carlos, the league’s leading scorer, led Creamline’s balanced attack with 14 points. Galanza chipped in 13 points, while Valdez had nine markers, 13 digs and eight excellent receptions.
Celine Domingo also rose to the occasion winning her first Finals MVP award after nailing four blocks to finish with 11 points.
Ace setter Jia De Guzman had 19 excellent sets, nine digs, and two points as Creamline dominated KingWhale in attacking, 43-30.
“We had more rest than KingWhale. In the third set, they lost steam. I think they’re tired. But they didn’t stop fighting and play great defense. We just had more rest I think that was the key,” said Creamline head coach Sherwin Meneses in Filipino after winning his second championship. “They’re really a great defensive team. It’s hard to kill the ball. So I told my players to just exert their strength in spiking, if they defend it, just keep on doing it.”
The Cool Smashers fought back from a 10-16 deficit in the second set with Michele Gumabao providing the spark from the bench and drilling the timely hits in their 15-3 run to take a two-set lead that paced their dominant third set rout.
“The team had a good mindset today. We trailed to KingWhale in the second set but my players didn’t give up, especially our bench players (Michele Gumabao) and Kyle (Negrito). It was a total team effort,” Meneses said.
Beatriz De Carvalho led the Taiwanese with 12 points, after being limited to 10-of-32 in attacks. She also had nine digs.
Chang Chih-Hsuan had eight points and nine excellent receptions, while Best Setter Liao Yi-Jen dished out 16 excellent sets as KingWhale ended its week-long trip in the Philippines.
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