ALYSSA Valdez and Jia Morado returned to action to lead Creamline to a 18-25, 25-14, 25-21, 25-14 victory over Motolite in the opener of their PVL Open semifinal series on Saturday at the Arena in San Juan.
The Cool Smashers had a rough start even as Morado and Valdez returned after training for five days with the Philippine women’s volleyball team in Japan, but managed to recover and move closer to a return trip to the finals.
Creamline tries to sweep the series in less than 24 hours, with the second match of the best-of-three series set on Sunday at 4 p.m.
Valdez unloaded game-high 20 points off 16 kills, two blocks and two aces laced with 16 digs, while Morado had 26 excellent sets for the Cool Smashers, who remained unbeaten in 17 games.
“The goal of the team naman is really to get Game One para pagpasok ng Game Two mataas din yung confidence namin tomorrow,” said Valdez, who missed several matches in the elimination round due to a right foot injury aside from leaving to join the early part of the national team’s training in Japan.
Michele Gumabao scored 16 points, while Jema Galanza had 13 points and 12 excellent receptions.
Middle blockers Pau Soriano and Celine Domingo added 11 markers each, while libero Kyla Atienza had 36 digs and 20 excellent receptions.
“We really adjusted during the first set since we haven’t been playing together as a team talaga. We’re just really happy that we’re all back together,” Valdez said.
Isa Molde scored 15 and Tots Carlos added 13 for Motolite.
Aie Gannaban added 10 markers, while their star spiker Myla Pablo was held to only six markers.