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Creamline, Cignal clash today

Games today:
(Araneta Coliseum)
2:30 p.m. — Creamline vs Cignal
5:30 p.m. — Chery Tiggo vs Petro Gazz

Creamline and Cignal clash in an all-important match that could decide their fate in the round-robin semifinals of the Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference at the Smart Araneta Coliseum Sunday.

Both squads hurdled their respective Final Four opening day rivals in straight sets to share the top spot with 1-0 win-loss cards and three points each.

The winner in the 2:30 p.m. encounter will boost its chances of making it to the best-of-three Finals of this import-laden conference.

Meanwhile, Chery Tiggo and Petro Gazz fight for dear life in the 5:30 p.m. main game. The loser of the match will kiss its championship round bid goodbye.

The grand slam-seeking Cool Smashers had an easy time taking down Petro Gazz, 25-21, 25-21, 25-23, last Thursday as the Alyssa Valdez-skippered squad scored a straight sets victory for the first time in the season-ending tournament.

“We just hope that we can bring the momentum of our last game heading to our next game,” Valdez, who had 11 points and 15 excellent receptions against the Angels, said.

Backing Valdez up is a star-studded crew led by Turkish import Yeliz Basa, Jema Galanza, middle Ced Domingo and prized setter Jia Morado-de Guzman.

The Cool Smashers beat the HD Spikers, 25-18, 22-25, 25-22, 25-12, in their elimination round meeting last 22 October.

Cignal head coach Shaq de los Santos vows to get a result in their favor this time.

“Knowing Creamline, we know how they play and are a very experienced team but we’ll give them a good fight,” the mentor said.

The HD Spikers are coming off a 28-26, 25-17, 25-23 win over the Crossovers last Thursday.

De los Santos’ strategy of playing American import Tai Bierria off the bench has been paying dividends with locals like winger Angeli Araneta stepping up in contributing points.

Araneta averaged 10 points per game in Cignal’s last three matches, adding another option on offense aside from reliable scorers in Bierria, skipper Rachel Anne Daquis, Ces Molina and middles Roselyn Doria and Riri Meneses.

On the other hand, Petro Gazz and Chery Tiggo have their backs against the wall as another defeat could land them settling for the battle for third.

The Angels outlasted the Crossovers, 25-14, 24-26, 25-13, 21-25, 15-9, in their elims showdown last 12 November.

American import Lindsey Vander Weide leads Petro Gazz’s drive to remain in the Finals race along with MJ Phillips, Aiza Maizo-Pontillas, Myla Pablo and setter Djanel Cheng.

Chery Tiggo will rely on Montenegrin Jelena Cvijovic, Mylene Paat, EJ Laure and Czarina Carandang to bounce back.

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