By NIKOLE JAVIER
Creamline bounced back from a third set meltdown and edged out Chery Tiggo, 25-15, 25-19, 23-25, 25-21, to salvage bronze in the Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference on Tuesday, Dec. 6, at the Philsports Arena in Pasig City.
Tots Carlos poured in19 points built on 17 attacks and two aces to tow the Cool Smashers to the podium despite the injury scare suffered by superstar Alyssa Valdez.
Valdez sustained contusion in her right knee while saving a play near their bench.
She never saw action again and the Crossovers pounced on her absence to steal the frame largely behind import Jelena Cvijovic, Mylene Paat, EJ Laure and Cza Carandang and took control early in the fourth.
Jema Galanza added 16 points while Jeanette Panaga and Celine Domingo had 14 and 12, respectively.
In the fourth set, the Cool Smashers bucked a slow start to even the match at 13-all with a denial on Mylene Paat at the net.
From that point on, the “Girls in Pink” went on the attack mode to pull away for good.
Despite the Crossovers’ best efforts to retake the lead, the Cool Smashers protected their advantage and unleashed a 4-0 run capped by Panaga’s quick attack to bring them to the match point and make it 24-21.
However, Chery Tiggo refused to fade easily before Galanza punctuated the match with a down-the-line kill.
“Natapos ‘yong campaign namin na naka-bronze kami. Masaya kami. Happy kami at na-experience namin ‘yong national [stint]. Pero marami pa naman opportunity na maka-Grand Slam, hindi naman nawawala sa amin ‘yon basta one at a time. We have chances pa naman,” said Creamline head coach Sherwin Meneses.
Paat’s 19-point outing paced the Crossovers while Cvijovic chipped in 13 markers in the losing effort.
Laure and Carandang also finished in double digits with 11 and 10, respectively, as they marked the end of their PVL Reinforced Conference campaign.