Not even a last-minute change in the schedule could stop Creamline from dominating Cignal in their semifinal encounter in the 2022 Premier Volleyball League Invitational Conference, Monday.
The Cool Smashers was supposed to face the Philippine women’s national volleyball team but the sudden pullout of the latter disrupted the league’s schedule.
The Rebisco-backed squad went up against the HD Spikers instead where they took the first two sets dominantly before sealing a tightly-contested third frame to come out with a 25-17, 25-15, 25-22 win to move on the cusp of another finals appearance.
Behind the flawless outing was playmaker Jia De Guzman, who delivered 26 excellent sets and three points in the team’s third win in as many outings in the semis.
“Sila coach Sherwin (Meneses) naman told us na kahit sinong itapat sa amin, we’re physically and mentally prepared saka once we found out na there was a switch in opponent, everyone made it a point to scout and study on their own kaagad,” said De Guzman.
“Sometimes, every other day na yung game so there’s not much time to dwell on things like that so whoever is our next opponent, we just do our best to prepare and recover physically and mentally,” said the six-time Best Setter.
“Our team right now is so focused on sino yung next na kalaban kasi honestly speaking, ‘di rin biro naman yung pinagdaanan ng lahat ng teams from the first round pa lang hanggang sa semis.”
It also helped that the Cool Smashers already went up against the HD Spikers earllier in the conference — a four-set loss at the Sta. Rosa Sports Complex, their first since the Open Conference.
Morado also said that the team made it a point to bounce back from their five-set win against PLDT last Saturday that saw them fall to a 0-2 deficit before eventually reversing the game.
“Nakalaban na rin naman namin before yung Cignal so it was just a matter of controlling our basic errors,” she said. “Also like coach [Meneses] mentioned yung celebrating every point, and everything that we weren’t able to execute properly in the last game.
“Thankfully, we were able to do it today.”