Alyssa Valdez shares secret behind Creamline Cool Smashers' hunger for more titles

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PHOTO: Premier Volleyball League Media Bureau
Creamline Cool Smashers debuted in the Philippines' Premier Volleyball League (PVL) in 2017 and the rest is history. The Rebisco-owned club ruled seven PVL conferences, finished as runner-up thrice, and landed third three times. Such feats made them the winningest team in the country's first-ever professional volleyball league.
In 2023, they nearly completed the season grand slam but fell short in the Invitationals against Japanese squad Kurashiki Ablaze. CCS, on the other hand, won the two All-Filipino Conferences, sweeping the season-ending AFC from the eliminations up to the best-of-three finals for a clean 15-0 record.
In the Second AFC last year, they even played without their usual starters setter Jia Morado-de Guzman and middle blocker Ced Domingo, who both went abroad to play internationally as imports. Despite the absence of their two starts, Creamline never showed signs of slowing down – this is a testament to the team's resiliency with others always ready to step up.
Regardless of what they achieved in the past, the Cool Smashers remained steadfast in continuing their reign in PVL Season 2024-2025. They added former Chocho Mucho Flying Titans' Bea de Leon and Denden Lazaro-Revilla, and beach volleyball player Dij Rodriguez to help them achieve this goal.
During the memorandum of agreement (MOA) signing of CCS and Hello Money – the e-wallet launched by Asia United Bank (AUB), team captain Alyssa Valdez answered the question of where the seven-time PVL champion's continuous hunger comes from.
The Phenom said the healthy competition within the club is the root that holds their winning culture together.
"I guess one thing that's very evident in our team is that we have that healthy competition on and off the court. So we challenge ourselves na talagang mag-improve pa everyday and ang inspiration din namin para mag-improve ay yung isa't isa," said Valdez in the day the Cool Smashers were named Hello Money's brand ambassadors.
Enough to ascertain that attitude was CCS' Second AFC campaign. As mentioned earlier, Creamline triumphed without de Guzman and Domingo. Surprisingly, they're unfazed by the challenge, as other players stepped up for them.
Filling in the shoes of the great de Guzman was Kyle Negrito. The Far Eastern University standout served as the primary playmaker of the Cool Smashers. Doubters and critics turned silent while watching her distribute the ball to the best offensive option.
Statistically, Negrito finished second in average excellent sets per set after the preliminaries. Sadly for opponents, Creamline's setting staff has no weakness, with her leading the way. She is even among the best servers in the league during the eliminations.
Domingo, on the other hand, was replaced by National University product Risa Sato. Her net defense and middle attacks are essential in neutralizing opposing attackers and breaking past or luring taller blockers with a faster tempo, respectively.
Their competitiveness towards each other is respect to them, Valdez added. "And definitely to add to that, I think we just have to have that culture na we have to respect each other."
Right now, Valdez and her company are focused on defending their First AFC crown. Hurdles to overcome are higher for the reigning titlist, with revamped lineups and new teams posing threats to their title bid. Despite this, Creamline is more than willing to beat all odds anew simply because they want more!

Last Modified: 2024-Mar-10 07.00.00 UTC+0800