PVL: Cool Smashers tighten grip on solo second
Mark Escarlote on Jun 12, 2019 04:18 PM
Defending champion Creamline stretched its winning streak to four straight to end the first round.
Defending champion Creamline survived some scary moments in the third set before prevailing over listless BaliPure, 25-19, 25-18, 25-23, on Wednesday in the Premier Volleyball League Season 3 Reinforced Conference at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan.
The Cool Smashers showed nerves of steel in the closing stretch of the last frame to outlast the Water Defenders and end the first round with a 4-1 win-loss record behind league-leading PetroGazz.
Skipper Alyssa Valdez led the way for Creamline with 16 points built on 12 attacks and four aces while adding 10 digs. Thai import Kuttika Kaewpin finished with 11 markers with 10 coming off spikes while Venezuelan Ale Blanco got nine for the Cool Smashers, who will open their second round campaign on Sunday against BanKo in the conference’s first out-of-town game in Iloilo.
“For me, hindi naman maiiwasan na maging complacent siguro after getting two sets. And doon sa two sets na yun, I guess most players na napasok ni Coach Tai [Bundit], nakaikot din na mga players,” said Valdez referring to their third set.
Creamline came back from a 4-10 deficit in the third frame with a 7-0 rally to taka an 11-10 lead.
The Cool Smashers engaged the Water Defenders in a nip-and-tuck race with Menchie Tubiera scoring on an attack to give BaliPure a 21-20 lead. Risa Sato answered with a kill block before Jema Galanza nailed an ace followed by a Tubiera attack error.
Sandra Delos Santos scored on a kill block for the Water Defenders but Tubiera overcooked her serve.
Slovenian Alexandra Vajdova saved a match point before Sato’s match-clinching denial that handed BaliPure its fifth straight defeat in as many games.
“More of naging complacent rin siguro,” added Valdez. “Inisip namin na tapos na pero suwerte lang kami on the latter parts of the third set, siguro yung breaks of the game.”
Vadjdova had 17 points while Danijela Dzakovic of Montenegro got 10 for the Water Defenders. Tubiera posted eight points in two sets of action for BaliPure, which threw away 20 points off errors.
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