PVL: Bench mob delivers for Creamline in Finals Game 1 win

PVL: Bench mob delivers for Creamline in Finals Game 1 win

/ 06:20 PM May 10, 2024

Creamline Michele Gumabao PVL All-Filipino Finals Choco Mucho Flying Titans

Creamline Cool Smashers’ Michele Gumabao in the PVL All-Filipino Finals game against Choco Mucho Flying Titans. –MARLO CUETO/INQUIRER.net

MANILA, Philippines — Creamline’s talent-rich roster proved to be its biggest edge against Choco Mucho in Game 1 of the 2024 PVL All-Filipino Conference Finals with Michele Gumabao and Bernadeth Pons providing the spark off the bench.

Jema Galanza and Tots Carlos did most of the damage to Choco Mucho but Gumabao and Pons also made a huge impact to overcome the Cool Smashers’ first set loss and pull them within the cusp of their eighth championship.

“When coach Sherwin fielded us, we have to do our job and provide energy [to our team]. We just trusted the decision of coach, our teammates, and God,” said Gumabao in Filipino after the 24-26, 25-20, 25-21, 25-16 win on Thursday in front of 17,457 fans at Smart Araneta Coliseum.

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“We enjoyed inside the court, maintaining Creamline’s good vibes throughout the game.”

Gumabao delivered seven points as a substitute to Carlos, while Pons tallied eight points as a starter in the fourth set, subbing in for Alyssa Valdez, who had nine points.

“Our mindset is to always be ready because coach prepared the whole team mentally that anytime, he will field us in so we have to help and contribute,” said Pons.

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READ: PVL: Creamline closes in on another title, beats Choco Mucho in Game 1

“We just enjoyed the moment and everyone showed their composure because nobody wanted to experience the first set loss again after blowing a big lead. We made sure to keep our composure in the end game even if we’re pulling away with a huge lead.”

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Bea De Leon spelled the difference with 11 points, highlighted by five blocks from the bench while backup setter Mafe Galanza provided quality minutes for the  Creamline bench mob.

Bernadeth Pons PVL Finals PVL All-Filipino Conference

Bernadeth Pons and the Choco Mucho Flying Titans in the PVL All-Filipino Finals game against Choco Mucho Flying Titans. –MARLO CUETO/INQUIRER.net

Pons and Gumabao said they didn’t want to experience their semifinal defeat to Choco Mucho — their first in 13 meetings — where they blew a two-set lead and, putting their All-Filipino ‘four-peat’ bid in limbo before beating Petro Gazz and Chery Tiggo to reach the finals.

“We don’t want [that loss] to happen again because we committed a lot of basic errors and coach reminded us not to easily give up those kinds of errors. We have to be mentally strong and focused on everything we do,” said Pons.

“We have to focus on ourselves and deliver our job from our respective roles, which we practice every day,” added Gumabao.

Creamline has a chance to complete another Finals sweep of Choco Mucho in their second straight title series for its eighth overall crown on Sunday in Game 2 at the Big Dome. 

“The job’s not done,” Pons said. “We want to claim the title and end the series but we have to work hard for it because it won’t be easy to close out [in Game 2].”

With Choco Mucho expected to make huge adjustments in Game 2 to save its campaign, Gumabao and the Creamline bench mob stay ready to contribute and provide the spark.

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“We got a one-game advantage but there are still a lot of lapses to address. We have to focus and practice more. It’s a good win but we haven’t achieved our goal this season. One more game,” Gumabao said. 

TAGS: Creamline Cool Smashers, PVL

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