BACARRA, ILOCOS NORTE — A well-rounded team effort proved to be the key as Creamline remained unscathed in the Premier Volleyball League Open Conference, dispatching the struggling PLDT in three sets, 25-16, 25-12, 25-13, here at the PCV Socio-Civic and Cultural Center on Sunday afternoon.
The Rebisco-backed squad moved up to a league-best 4-0 standing.
After a dominant second set, Creamline picked up right where they left off. They ran to a 16-8 advantage to enter the second technical timeout of the third set.
Tots Carlos gave the Cool Smashers their biggest lead of the set at 10, 21-11.
Pau Soriano put Creamline at match-point before Rizza Mandapat bagged the win.
Creamline head coach Tai Bundit, who arrived inside the PVL bubble yesterday afternoon, was present at the venue but lead assistant Sherwin Meneses still called the shots for the defending champions.
“Happy happy lang. ‘Yun naman sinabi coach Tai, kaya happy kami sa loob, medyo lumayo score. So ‘yung second stringer kailangan din talagang i-break. So maganda naman pinakita ng second stringer talaga,” said Meneses.
Meanwhile, Jeanette Panaga missed the match due to a sprained right ankle she suffered during Creamline’s five-set win over Black Mamba-Army last Thursday.
Alyssa Valdez led all scorers with 16 points — all of which came from attacks. Jia Morado dished out 19 excellent sets and scored three points in the win.
Michelle Gumabao put up nine points off four blocks. Meanwhile, Jema Galanza had an all-around game with eight points, 13 digs, and nine receptions.
After a seesaw affair heading into the second technical timeout, Celine Domingo led Creamline to a 21-14 advantage in the first set.
Jorelle Singh kept PLDT afloat before the Cool Smashers ran away with a 25-16 first-set win capped off by a block.
It was all Creamline in the second set, bursting to a 15-5 start before Isa Molde stopped the bleeding for the Power Hitters.
The Cool Smashers’ lead ballooned up to 14 points, 21-7, before sealing the 2-0 advantage at 25-12.
Isa Molde and Shola Alvarez led PLDT with seven and five markers, respectively. The Power Hitters continued their slide down the standings with a 0-4 record.
Creamline will have a two-day break before taking on BaliPure on Wednesday at 6:00 PM. Meanwhile, PLDT will look to snatch its breakthrough win against Petro Gazz on Tuesday at 6:00 PM.