CAGAYAN Valley coach Nes Pamilar was relieved to see his wards preserve their immaculate record against the dreaded Smart trio of attackers, and they hope to pull off a more comfortable win in their next showdown and clinch the Open Conference title.
The Rising Suns had a scare from the Net Spikers offense led by Alyssa Valdez, Dindin Santiago and Thai reinforcement Lithawat Kesinee before pulling off a 26-24, 25-11, 23-25, 11-25, 15-12 win in the series opener.
"Masyado sila maraming malalakas," said Cagayan coach Nes Pamilar referring to the Valdez, Kesinee and Santiago.
"Basta kami tuluy-tuloy lang ng laro namin," he added.
The Smart offense may not be in full force when the series resumes, but Pamilar vows to be ready nonetheless.
Game Two of the best-of-three showdown is on Sunday, which should give Alyssa Valdez time to recover after hurting her shoulder in a collision with teammate Maru Banaticla.
Santiago, however, is doubtful for the match, with the National University Lady Bulldogs set to leave Monday for the University Games in Bacolod.
The Rising Suns, led by team captain Angge Tabaquero, are also looking to complete a season sweep.
"Kailangan mas lalo pa magtrabaho hindi kami pwedeng magpahinga," said Pamilar, whose team holds a 15-0 win-loss record.