Cool Smashers anticipate much-needed relaxation following their challenging PVL title victory

May 16, 2024

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MANILA, Philippines – As with all Premier Volleyball League teams, the Creamline Cool Smashers will get the much-needed rest after one of the most difficult, if not the most, conferences in league history.

However, there’s a vibe among the Cool Smashers that, upon their return from their much-needed vacation, you can be sure they’ll be back in the hunt, taking advantage of everyone like a pack of lions and winning titles.

“For now, we enjoy – don’t worry, there’s still volleyball to play,” triumphant Creamline coach Sherwin Meneses said late on Sunday night, shortly after leading the illustrious team to an unprecedented eighth league title with a two-game finals sweep and a thrashing of younger sibling Choco Mucho.

“After that, let’s have the next conference and see each other again,” he continued.

It would also be the beginning of the proud club’s introspection about what it needed to do to stay up with rival teams hoping to end its dynastic reign and the league’s constantly improving terrain.

And it would start from within each member of the Creamline crew.

“Our losses were our lessons,” declared Alyssa Valdez, the undisputed leader of Creamline and the nation’s sports spokesperson.

It was a pretty challenging conference for us, presumably because we’re attempting to determine as a team what areas we can still improve upon and where we should go from here in terms of our careers and personal life.

“But in the end, we see this victory as a sign of hope for all of us—that no matter what, no matter how far we go or how high we finish before the semifinals, may hope and opportunity talaga lahat ng bagay, hindi ka naggi-give up,” she continued.

Another is the significant chance, if not a given, that veteran setter Jia de Guzman will rejoin the squad following a year-long assignment in Japan.

Meneses responded, with a “Yes” when asked if De Guzman would be joining the team again. “However, the current state of affairs is not clear, but we will be informed before the next conference begins, hopefully with improvement.”

“She will always be with Creamline; we can’t let the management stop them from taking advantage of opportunities overseas,” he continued.

In July, Creamline, the conference winner, will select 12th and last in the league’s historic first rookie selection, which is expected to bring in some youthful talent.

“It’s not up to us, it depends on where we go,” Meneses remarked.

Former Finals MVP Jema Galanza may become a prophet if all the pieces fall into place and the stars align once more. Galanza famously said, “Dadagdagan pa namin ng nine, 10, 11 forever,” which may or may not be prophetic words for the rest of the field.

Amidst this and their defeat, Choco Mucho is driven to fantasize because of the agony of losing.

For Choco Mucho, a Premier Volleyball League championship is still out of reach. But the Flying Titans’ quest for greatness goes on despite the most recent bridesmaid finish.

After Choco Mucho lost to a traditional conqueror in Creamline for the second straight Finals on Sunday, Sisi Rondina, one of the conference’s finest outside spikers, said in Filipino, “I always tell my teammates every time we play, [we] have to believe, trust [each other] and win.”

“If we follow through on that, we won’t look back because we gave it our all. As I mentioned in the dugout, let’s never give up on our dreams because success is just around the corner,” Rondina continued.

After sweeping the semifinals, the Flying Titans entered the best-of-three championship series against the Cool Smashers as the favorites.

However, Creamline put on another courageous display in front of more than 24,000 spectators at Smart Araneta Coliseum, winning an incredible 20-25, 25-20, 22-25, 25-22, and 15-11 victory to complete the series sweep and claim an eighth league title that sent the Flying Titans to tears.

Undoubtedly, Choco Mucho is not going to take a second consecutive silver medal for granted because it will only motivate the Flying Titans to have a more valuable object around their necks the next time.

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