Creamline’s historic title run in the PVL Open Conference showed spiker Alyssa Valdez and setter Jia Morado remain as the backbone of the Cool Smashers’ campaign. But Jema Galanza’s emergence as a go-to guy should make the team fiercer and tougher when the league’s next season is unveiled.
Not only did the former Adamson U standout share the Best Open spiker honors with PetroGazz counterpart Jovie Prado but she also came away with the conference’s most coveted award – the MVP trophy.
When Valdez went down with injury and had to honor her commitment, along with Morado, with the national team, the Cool Smashers hardly felt their absence as Galanza, along with Michele Gumabao, Risa Sato, Kyle Negrito, Kyla Atienza and the rest stepped up, leading to that first-ever sweep of a conference in the league organized by Sports Vision.
“For me, it feels so good since all our hard work, sacrifices bore fruit,” said Galanza, who normed 14.12 points in the elims as the Cool Smashers’ leading scorer. She had 36.43 percent success rate in attacks, landed a norm on 0.37 aces per set, averaged 3.10 digs per set and the top non-libero player in excellent receptions with 47.22 percent efficiency rate.
Posting a sweep of a conference – 20 games in all, is indeed one for the books. And Galanza personified efficiency, Finals MVP and best setter Morado showed consistency, and top libero Kyla Atienza, the most recognizable but oftentimes overlooked player in the court, proved as worthy as the rest with her spectacular saves, digs and all.