As the mistakes piled up, so did Creamline’s resolve to find a way around them.
As the core that dominated the Premier Volleyball League lost two crucial pieces, the Cool Smashers continue to employ the proven trial-and-error approach in their All-Filipino Conference title defense.
“I think we have to go back to our system and keep working and trying,” said Michele Gumabao after Creamline outlasted the hungry Farm Fresh, 25-21, 21-25, 25-20, 25-22, Tuesday at FilOil EcoOil Centrum . “If something doesn’t work, we try again. We know our mistakes, so we know how to fix them.
“It’s a matter of who can adapt quickly in the game,” Gumabao continued as Creamline remained at the top of the standings with its fourth straight win while holding the hard-fought Foxies scoreless in five games. Farm Fresh is now on a 10-game losing streak dating back to its competitive debut in the Invitational Conference. But if the Foxies’ last two games are any indication, the team is ripe for a win. Farm Fresh also stole a set from Akari – the first in fact – and fought just as hard to the end of each frame as they did against the defending champion on Tuesday.
Creamline certainly didn’t help matters and gave up 30 points to Farm Fresh for errors. In contrast, the Foxies had just 19 errors. Before Tuesday evening, the Cool Smashers had only surrendered one set, and that was the victory in the opening match to sister team and fellow powerhouse Choco Mucho. “We had too many mistakes. We didn’t play well. Farm Fresh is really promising. As I told my team, we cannot take it easy against the Foxies because they have real potential,” coach Sherwin Meneses said in Filipino. “If you give them a chance, they will really fight it out.”
Creamline is trying to fill in for the departure of top setter Jia de Guzman and starting middle blocker Ced Domingo, both of whom flew abroad to play as imports.
A challenging Chery Tiggo, meanwhile, recovered from her first defeat by beating Gerflor 25-8, 25-12, 25-20 earlier.
Coming back from a stunning loss to Akari last Tuesday, the Crossovers were unrelenting in the first two sets, conceding just 20 points as they prepared for a big showdown with Petro Gazz later this week. One that does not define us,” said Eya Laure, who scored twelve points. “We just worked and made progress.”
“We just have to be proactive about what happened because once we think about that, [it will be hard to continue]coach Aaron Velez told reporters after Chery cruised to its second win in three games as the Defenders fell to 0-4. “At the same time, we must have a sense of urgency. Every point, every set counts.”
Chery, who lost 25-20, 18-25, 25-22, 25-20 to Akari, also got help from Princess Robles’ nine points. Libero Jennifer Nierva had 11 excellent digs.
“I think [the third set] is where we need to emphasize more in our next matches that despite our current run, we cannot be complacent. Everything can change in an instant. Our momentum can change at any time, so we have to be aware of that,” Velez said.
“Any time you get the chance… make the most of it, because you never know when [you’ll have] that chance [again],” Velez added. “My players, what they have delivered before is really true [coming] more from their experience and hopefully they benefit from it.” INQ