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VOLLEY

Creamline sweeps elims, battles Chery Tiggo in semis

Jema Galanza powers Creamline to an elimination round sweep after taking down Galeries Tower. (PVL photo)

Defending champion Creamline rallied from a set down to beat Galeries Tower, 19-25, 25-16, 25-14, 25-13, and complete an elimination round sweep of the Premier Volleyball League All-Filipino Conference Tuesday at the Philsports Arena in Pasig City.

Wingers Jema Galanza and Bernadeth Pons led the Cool Smashers to their 11th win in as many games to secure the top seeding in the semifinals.

Creamline will square off with No. 4 seed Chery Tiggo in the best-of-three semis starting Thursday at the same venue.

“I would like to congratulate my players for fishing the elimination round with an 11-0 (record). But of course, our goal is beyond the eliminations so on Thursday we’ll work harder,” Cool Smashers coach Sherwin Meneses said.

Meneses tweaked his starting lineup in the opening set but backfired as the Highrisers, fresh from a come-from-behind five-set win over Gerflor last Thursday, pounced on every opportunity to score.

But Creamline was quick to recover as it cruised in the next three frames despite sitting out skipper Alyssa Valdez for a much-deserved rest heading into the next round.

Galanza scored 11 of her 12 points on attacks while Pons punched in 10 markers including nine kills for the Cool Smashers. Tots Carlos, Pangs Panaga and Rose Vargas all added eight markers each while setter Kyle Negrito dished out 17 excellent sets.

Galeries Tower finished its league debut with a 1-10 slate at 11th spot.

Roma Joy Doromal was the only Highriser in double figures with 13 points including 11 kills. Ysa Jimenes and Raprap Aguilar chipped in with five each for Galeries Tower, which looked poised to score a major upset only to get crushed in the end.

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