It was an all around effort from Creamline to start their PVL All-Filipino Conference campaign on a good note.
As the saying goes, if it ain't broke, don't fix it.
The Creamline Cool Smashers came into the season without any roster changes—and that’s despite the fact that the injured Alyssa Valdez is still unsure whether she can play in the All-Filipino Conference.
In their 2023 pilot match, the Cool Smashers showed they are ready to make another championship run this season, defeating the Petro Gazz Angels in straight sets, 25-18, 25-20, 25-22.
Coach Sherwin Meneses attributed the win to the team’s depth as four players reached double-digit scoring in the match, led by Michelle Gumabao and Ced Domingo with 13 points apiece. Tots Carlos also notched 11, while Jeanette "Pangs" Panaga had 10 points of her own.
“Katulad nung dati naming sinasabi, kahit sinong player sa Creamline ay iisa lang ginagawa, so kahit sino 'yung ipasok, alam naman nila gagawin nila kasi mga leader din naman sila,” said Meneses.
Gumabao, Creamline’s opposite hitter, said they wanted to make sure they will not place any undue pressure on Valdez to return to action right away.
“Sa volleyball naman lahat ng position tina-try namin aralin, so io-offer din namin ito kay Ly since hindi pa siya makabalik. Ayaw din namin na ma-stress siya, bilisan niya 'yung pagbalik,” said Gumabao.
But while the Cool Smashers did finish the game in just three sets, two of those were comeback wins. Gumabao said the clinching victories after climbing back from a deficit will ultimately be helpful for their squad to identify and minimize lapses.
“Blessing din talaga sa amin 'yung first game na ito, because magandang training din ito para sa amin na ganun 'yung score.”