Relentless Creamline destroys Chery Tiggo in PVL semifinals
MANILA, Philippines–Creamline knows that a win in the semifinals doesn’t count for much, unless it delivers the knockout punch to a foe it has put hard against the ropes.
But at the same time, the Cool Smashers know that drawing first blood over Chery Tiggo via a 25-18, 27-25, 25-22 win at the start of their best-of-three semifinal series in the Premier Volleyball League All-Filipino Conference on Thursday is a crucial step toward their goal of defending their title.
“The fight is not yet over,” Creamline coach Sherwin Meneses said in Filipino after sweeping the Crossovers at PhilSports Arena in Pasig. “We still need (to win) one more game to enter the Finals.”
Gunning for a sixth consecutive All-Filipino Finals appearance, Creamine encountered rough sailing only in the second set as the Cool Smashers dominated the Crossovers practically on all fronts to carve out the win in 96 minutes.
And basing on that dominating performance and their second win over the Crossovers in the conference, the Cool Smashers now have all the motivation and confidence to close out this series this weekend.
Not playing in their last elimination round game served Alyssa Valdez well as she shared the starring role once again for the Cool Smashers, who are eyeing to win this conference for the second time this season.
“Every game is very important, this win will motivate us to play even better next game,” Meneses said.
Jema Galanza finished with 17 points mostly on attacks and Tots Carlos’ 15 points, with Valdez accounting for 12 to complete a three-sided battering ram that Chery Tiggo had no answer to.
The seasoned Valdez assured everyone that the Cool Smashers, who are now unbeaten in 12 games here, will not take it easy.
“It’s always harder to close out a series. So definitely, the pressure will be even higher in Game 2,” said Valdez. “It was a good match today. We have things to improve on [like minimizing] our errors, so we will use this win as a confidence booster for the next game”
Even though Creamline has made it to nine title series while winning six, Galanza still acknowledges playing under pressure.
“Does the pressure ever go away? There is always pressure, but having played a lot of high-pressure games, we can handle it much better now and we can hold on to each other because no one wants to lose,” Galanza said.