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Lady Warriors seek more glory

Pocari Sweat credited its composure, chemistry and championship experience in winning its third straight title in the Premier Volleyball League.

Their latest title win was at the expense of the BaliPure Water Defenders Thursday night in a match that saw everybody contributing a little of everything.

They won their best-of-three title series, 2-1, capped by a 20-25, 25-17, 25-17, 25-19 win in a game where import Krystal Rivers finally showed her true worth.

Overall, Pocari coach Rommel Abella said their chemistry and experience spelled the difference.

“Yun ‘yung nagdala sa amin over the hump. Hindi naman kami natakot na matalo; natakot kami na baka hindi namin ma-sustain ‘yung performance namin,” said Abella.

But their title quest this time was not without difficulty. They sweated it out every game – no wonder they had to go through the quarterfinal round before advancing to the semis.

Gaining the No. 3 seeding in the semis, they outlasted the Power Smashers in their best-of-three affair before outsmarting the Water Defenders in the finals.

Their struggle started when Edina Selimovic suffered injury late in the preliminaries and battled through technical issues with new Rivers.

After getting an International Transfer Certificate, Rivers was finally allowed to play in the finals.

And she was marvelous.

“It’s been amazing, being part of this team. It has a great team culture, they really welcomed me in, so it played a huge part of me being able to settle in quickly,” said Rivers, who averaged 24 points in her three appearances.

“To make it this far, you got to have team chemistry aside from talent,” she added.

Abella said the team made sure that Rivers will be treated like a family as soon as she joined the squad.

“We made sure na sa isama siya (Rivers) sa lahat. ‘Yun ‘yung alam naming mas magiging mabilis na paraan for her to ‘acclimatize’ sa culture namin sa team,” Abella said.