With Creamline ace Tots Carlos hobbled by a minor injury, Jema Galanza made sure to step up and lead the Cool Smashers’ huge bounce back victory against Chery Tiggo on Saturday night.
Galanza stepped up and fired 25 points on 22 attacks, two aces, and a block to go along with 13 excellent digs and 12 excellent receptions to lift Creamline past the Crossovers, 17-25, 25-11, 25-19, 25-21 in the 2023 Premier Volleyball League All-Filipino Conference at the Philsports Arena.
“Kasi nitong week talaga medyo nagka-problem talaga kasi may mga iniinda nga. Si Tots [Carlos] nga isa sa mga main spikers talaga ng Creamline, nawala ng ilang araw, so kailangan din talaga mag-double time para hindi mahirapan yung buong team,” said Galanza after the victory.
“Actually, ineenjoy lang talaga yung game kasi every game talaga sobrang ganda ng laban talaga so ineenjoy ko lang talaga,” she added.
The two-time PVL Most Valuable Player suffered a minor hamstring injury which forced the coaching staff to sit her out in the entire first set. Carlos was eventually fielded in the second frame and finished the game.
She still finished with nine points despite only playing the last three sets for the Rebisco-backed squad.
“Yes [may iniinda si Tots], kasi nung last game namin medyo hindi maganda yung pag-landing niya so kahapon lang siya naka-training talaga pero nandun naman siya sa mga activity niya sa strengthening,” said Cool Smashers head coach Sherwin Meneses.
“Tinignan lang muna talaga namin yung situation. Thankful kami kasi medyo ‘di sumakit yung hamstring ni Tots kasi iniingatan talaga namin,” added the PVL champion coach.
Making matters worse, team captain Alyssa Valdez looks like she is set to miss more time after the team announced before the game that the three-time PVL MVP underwent a procedure recently to address her right knee injury which she sustained last December.
Still, despite the manpower woes, Meneses said that the team will continue to fight as they look to secure two more wins to enter the All-Filipino Conference semifinals.
“Nandon pa rin kami, one point a time, kung makuha namin yung panalo ng dalawang sunod [panalo], mas maganda. I think doon kami makakaaadjust kasi medyo dikit dikit talaga yung game, dikit dikit din yung practice,” said Meneses.
“Actually, wala kaming rest ngayon kasi may game kami sa Tuesday pero ganun talaga, excited nga kami kasi tatlong laro na lang yung eliminations.”