Cool Smashers go for the kill, PVL crown

MANILA, Philippines — Creamline goes for the clincher but with a back-to-zero mindset even as PayMaya vows to strike back with a faster, more aggressive game in Game Two of the Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference at the MOA Arena in Pasay today.

The Cool Smashers moved to the threshold of a first title in the league after disposing of the erratic High Flyers, 25-21, 22-25, 25-20, 25-19, in the series’opener last Sunday with Thai Kuttika Kaewpin, Alyssa Valdez and Laura Schaudt leading the charge.

But Creamline, which turned in a pair of third place finishes in last year’s inaugurals of the league organized by Sports Vision, opts to put the Game One victory behind as it braces for a big fightback from the High Flyers in their 3:45 p.m. duel.

“We have to forget about this game (Game One). Whatever happened today, we start form zero. Each and every set, coach Tai reminds us, 0-0. There’s no mindset that we’re one game up. We have to be eager as we were in Game One and start each and every set with confidence and power,” said Creamline opposite hitter Michele Gumabao, who chipped in eight points in Game One.

American Tess Rountree and local ace Grethcel Soltones, meanwhile, look to improve on their efficiency as even if they led PayMaya’s offense with 26 and 11 points, respectively, in Game One, they accounted for some of the team’s errors in crucial stretches of the last two sets.

Soltones floundered twice from the attack line and erred once from the service box while Rountree netted her serve as the duo combined for four of the High Flyers’ seven miscues in a stretch in the third set that enabled Creamline to surge to a 22-17 lead.