Creamline Cool Smashers team captain Alyssa Valdez earned the inaugural Philips Gold-PVL Press Corps Player of the Week for games played from July 8-15.
The four-time V-League MVP started the week with a bang, blitzing the Hair Fairy-Air Force Lady Jet Spikers with 23 points and leading Creamline to a decisive four-set win.
Facing the Myla Pablo-powered defending champs Pocari Sweat Lady Warriors, the former Ateneo de Manila University Lady Eagle exploded for 30 points and 16 digs, and pushed the Cool Smashers to the top of the PVL Open Conference standings with an immaculate 4-0 record.
Valdez has been on fire for the entire conference. She again leads the league in scoring, with 108 total points, and also tops the serving category with nine total aces. The Batangas-native also showed tremendous improvement in the defensive category, ranking sixth in digging with 3.56 digs per set.
The three-time UAAP MVP credits her solid performance to the addition of new teammates: setter and former Ateneo teammate Jia Morado, veteran Rose Vargas, and Army standout Ging Balse. The 24-year-old spiker says that the additional help has allowed her to focus more on her individual game.
“It’s been great having Jia back on my side. She’s always been a great setter and she really makes it easier for her spikers like me to score.
“Sobrang happy din ako to have Ate Rose and Ate Ging on the team kasi I’ve always looked up to them and they provide a lot on inspiration for the team to keep working harder especially in practice,” Valdez expressed.
While her week was productive, Valdez was left with bittersweet feelings, as she departs from the team during the final stretch of the elimination round to train with the National Team in Japan from July 17 to August 2.
“Definitely it’s going to be hard for me to leave the team kasi nga very crucial ‘yung last games namin. But I’m confident in my teammates and my coaches that they will find a way.
“I’m definitely looking forward to coming back and playing with my teammates again,” said the native of San Juan, Batangas, who will campaign with the Philippine in the AVC Asian Seniors Women’s Championship here in Manila from August 9 to 17, and in the Southeast Asian Games in Malaysia from August 19 to 30.
With Valdez leaving the team with a 4-0 record, the Cool Smashers need only one more win to qualify for the semifinals. From then on, Valdez will be back to try and lead Creamline to their first Finals appearance.