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Alyssa Valdez-less Creamline drubs Petro Gazz


Games Tuesday:

(Philsports Arena)

4:00 p.m. — PLDT vs F2 Logistics

6:30 p.m. — Chery Tiggo vs Cignal


Defending champion Creamline barely felt the absence of injured main hitter Alyssa Valdez after a 25-18, 25-20, 25-22, crushing of Petro Gazz in the Premier Volleyball League All-Filipino Conference Saturday night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

The Cool Smashers relied on its deep arsenal to demolish the same squad it defeated in the finals of the Open Conference last year despite missing the services of Valdez, who suffered a right knee injury during the Reinforced Conference battle for third last year.

Veteran Michele Gumabao led three other Creamline players in double figures with 13 points anchored on 11 attacks off 23 spike attempts with one kill block and one ace.

“Io-offer din naming ito kay Ly since hindi pa siya makakabalik. Ayaw din naming na ma-stress siya basically sa kanyang pagbalik. Ang dami rin naman naming tao,” Gumabao said.

“So the reason why hindi rin kami nagpalit ng lineup and may tiwala sa amin ang mga coaches is because nandoon naman din ang support from the second six.”

Ced Domingo scored 13 points while Tots Carlos, who switched from opposite to open, and Jeanette Panaga had 11 and 10 markers, respectively, for the Cool Smashers. Setter Jia Morado tallied 27 excellent sets to help Creamline hammer down 45 attack points.

Creamline, which spoiled the Petro Gazz coaching debut of Oliver Almadro, cruised in the first two sets before facing tough resistance in the third frame.

Aiza Maizo-Pontillas put the Reinforced Conference champions Angels ahead, 22-21, before Domingo ignited the Cool Smashers’ closing 4-0 barrage to finish their rivals.

Gumabao landed an ace followed by a Domingo quick attack before Jonah Sabete committed an attack error – the last of Petro Gazz’s 21 miscues – to end the game in one hour and 33 minutes.

Pontillas and Nicole Tiamzon posted 10 points each for the Angels, who played sans Reinforced Conference Best Middle Blocker MJ Phillips due to a minor shoulder injury.

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