By Juan Carlo R. Mercado

Tots Carlos alongside Alyssa Valdez, combined for 42 points to propel the Creamline Cool Smashers against the Lady Troopers, 25-21, 23-25, 25-19, 25-17, in the PVL Invitational Conference semifinals round on Thursday at the Ynares Center in Antipolo.

Photo Courtesy of Tiebreaker Times

Carlos, the 2022 Open Conference MVP, delivered a superb performance by leading her team to a dub, scoring 24 points consisting of 21 attacks, 2 blocks, and an ace while Valdez contributed 18 points to take their first semis victory.

With a tight second set loss from the Army, Creamline set the momentum cruising to 24-17 match point courtesy of Michelle Morente’s outside hit and finishing the game with Jema Galanza’s off-the-block spike, 25-17.

Cool Smashers reigned supreme in the third set to grab a 2-1 lead over Army with De Guzman who equipped Alyssa Valdez in the latter half of the frame and activated her by delivering excellent sets to Valdez to steal the set from the Lady troopers, 25-19.

"Yung team naman naka-recover doon sa nakuhang set ng Army kasi syempre yung Army hindi rin naman magpapatalo,” Creamline head coach, Sherwin Meneses stated.

"Yun lang naman yung hinahanap namin e kasi yung situation nandoon na e, kailangan lang naming maka-recover doon sa second set loss namin. Nag-contribute naman yung mga player, everyone," he added.

De Guzman chalked up 28 excellent sets to lead Creamline’s offense, while Galanza added 14 excellent digs with 12 points and 8 excellent receptions, and middle blocker Jeanette Panaga was also unstoppable with 10 points.

In the opening set, the Army Black Mamba started strong but the Cool Smashers strengthened their defense and countered Army’s attacks.

While Creamline made a communication error during the final play, Jovelyn Gonzaga led the Lady Troopers to steal the second set from Creamline.

Gonzaga went down with a mesmerizing triple-double of 13 points, 18 excellent receptions, and as well as 18 excellent digs while Royse Tubino added 11 points with Jeanette Villareal who scored 10 points and Joanne Bunag also scored 10 points.

Army will go up against Cignal at 2:30 PM on Saturday while Creamline will battle PLDT at 5:30 PM at the same place.

Edited by Quian Vencel Galut