BaliPure, Creamline face off for semis

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BALIPURE seeks to earn the first semifinals berth when it battles Creamline on Tuesday in the Premier Volleyball League (PVL) women’s tournament.

With eyes locked on the first semis spots, the Water Defenders try to sprint ahead of the pack as only the top 2 teams will advance in the next round. The remaining four squads will square it out in a round-robin eliminations for the last two seats.

The match is set at 6:30 p.m. at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan City.

BaliPure made a big splash by sweeping its loaded weekend to take the top place and improve its record to six wins against two losses. The Water Defenders swept Air Force in straight sets, 25-17, 25-12, 25-17, last Saturday, and survived Perlas in five sets, 25-21, 25-23, 16-25, 25-27, 15-10 last Sunday at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig City.

However, BaliPure Head Coach Roger Gorayeb is still after the team’s complacency every time they take a 2-0 set lead.

“Every time we take the first two sets, they tend to be very complacent,” Gorayeb said. “You should know what your problem is.”

“I don’t know what you’re feeling but this is a game. We should treat this professionally,” Gorayeb added. “This is a club team, not a university team. We should be responsible enough for all our actions inside the court.”

Those strong pronouncements were addressed to his crew consisting of Grethcel Soltones, Jasmin Nabor, Risa Sato and Jerrili Malabanan, as well as imports Jeng Bualee and Jennifer Keddy.

Creamline, on the other hand, saw signs of inconsistency from its players after splitting its back-to-back weekend games. The Cool Smashers, powered by their debuting imports Laura Schaudt and Kuttika Kaewpin, halted Pocari Sweat’s six-game winning streak, 21-25, 25-18, 25-20, 25-13, last Saturday. But they lost their second assignment the following day against the Power Smashers in five sets, 25-17, 22-25, 18-25, 25-18, 10-15.

“As the season goes, it shows that we still have a lot of things to work on our team,” said Creamline skipper Alyssa Valdez, who has been carrying the load of her team with an average of 23.13 points in eight games. “We can’t make excuses also so we have to accept the fact that we lost to the Power Smahers, recover, and try to do well in the next game.”

The Cool Smashers are sitting at fifth place with a 3-5 card and has no chance to get the two outright semis spot.

Meanwhile, the Power Smashers (4-4) seek to ride on the crest of their big win over Creamline as they take on Air Force (1-6) at 4 p.m., right after the men’s game between the winless Café Lupe (0-3) and IEM (1-3) at 1 p.m.