Cignal upsets Creamline, nears finals

Joey Villar - The Philippine Star
Cignal upsets Creamline, nears finals
Tai Bierria
Jun Mendoza

MANILA, Philippines — Cignal put up an almost impenetrable net defense and took advantage of an out-of-sync Creamline import Yeliz Basa as it eked out a shock 23-25, 25-23, 28-26, 25-18 victory yesterday to move on the cusp of a breakthrough finals appearance in the PVL Reinforced Conference.

Tai Bierria unloaded a match-high 21 points while presiding over her team’s net defense with three blocks as the HD Spikers nailed their second straight win and jumped closer to the best-of-three finals.

It was an upset of sorts for Cignal, which barely made the semifinals as the No. 4 seed, against a franchise that is not only the top seed but also the heavy favorite to win it all and essay a historic Grand Slam.

A win for the HD Spikers tomorrow at the PhilSports Arena against the Petro Gazz Angels would seal their first finals appearance since joining the country’s pro volley league last year.

“I feel like this team is characterized by our ability to keep getting better and better. It’s really amazing,” said an ecstatic Bierria.

Cignal’s re-emergence as a title contender was helped with Basa playing a little off. The import sat out the whole fourth set and wound up with just 17 points.

Later, Petro Gazz smothered Chery Tiggo, 25-15, 25-17, 25-13, to improve to 1-1 and stay in the finals hunt. The Crossovers dropped to 0-2.

Creamline skipper Alyssa Valdez, who paced her team with 20 hits, and the Cool Smashers tried to turn the tide in their favor but were unsuccessful.


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