BaliPure wins five-set thriller to deal Creamline first loss, keep alive PVL finals bid
Aiko Urdas and the Water Defenders break the hex against the Cool Smashers. Dante Peralta

BALIPURE downed erstwhile unbeaten Creamline, 25-19, 19-25, 25-16, 18-25, 15-13, on Sunday to force a third match in their semifinal series in the PVL Open at The Arena in San Juan.

Aiko Urdas scored 19 points, Jerrili Malabanan added 15, Risa Sato had 10 and Grethcel Soltones had an all-around performance of 12 points, 11 digs and 20 excellent receptions for the Water Defenders.

It was the second straight five-set showdown between the two teams and the Water Defenders came out on top this time to extend the series to a winner-take-all.

“Labanan ng matitibay ng loob ito,” said BaliPure coach roger Gorayeb.

“Ang sabi ko lang sa kanila kagabi, uuwi tayo masaya tayong uuwi,” he added. “Hindi tayo uuwi nang malungkot kasi talo tayo, ayaw ko nang ganoon. Kailangan lang buo ang loob niyo otherwise hihilain kami ng ganoong experience pababa.”

It was the first loss in the tournament for Creamline, which had strung up eight straight victories, four without top hitter Alyssa Valdez.

Pau Soriano made 19 points for the Cool Smashers, while Cesca Racraquin added 14 and Rosemarie Vargas contributed 10.

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