PVL: Alyssa Valdez, Creamline keep win streak going vs Petro Gazz
MANILA, Philippines—Creamline has not lost a match to Petro Gazz since Game 3 of the Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference Finals three years ago.
The Cool Smashers have won 12 in a row against the Angels since then, including a 25-19, 16-25, 25-18, 27-25 victory on Tuesday in the 2022 Reinforced Conference at Philsports Arena.
But despite Creamline’s success against Petro Gazz, Alyssa Valdez admitted it’s always a tough task facing the Angels.
“We really take it one game at a time because it’s still a long conference. But we really respect Petro Gazz. We always have extra preparation when we go up against them. We prepare in terms of the players we have to stop,” said Valdez, who displayed her all-around brilliance with 14 points, 22 digs and 15 receptions.
The three-time PVL MVP added their thrilling matches against the Angels, whom they faced in the 2019 and 2022 Open Conference finals, give them “an extra push.”
“We have an extra push because, since day one, our team and Petro Gazz have been clashing in very close fights all the time. We just listen to our coaches’ strategies and the things we have to do,” she said.
Valdez also liked how Creamline responded after dropping the second set, where they allowed Petro Gazz to string up 11 straight points and end with a 12-2 run to tie the match one set apiece.
“We were frozen. It’s part of the game. There are times when you will lose your momentum and your opponent will get it. But a new set is a new start for us,” said the Creamline skipper. “One thing that we didn’t have in the first set was service and first ball. We can’t counter nor we can’t do the first attack. But in the third set, coach reminded us to control ourselves, which we failed to do in the second.”
Valdez took charge late in the fourth set with Yeli Basa, who led Creamline with 28 points, already at the back line, repaying her teammates’ trust.
“Yeli is at the back. I’m glad that my teammates trust me even though I got blocked sometimes or my attack was covered by our opponents. I gave my all in the last few points. It’s not that I asked for the ball but I think Jia (de Guzman) made the best decision at that moment,” the national team star recalled.
Valdez hopes to keep their momentum going against Cignal on Saturday in Sta. Rosa, Laguna.