MANILA, Philippines — Alyssa Valdez said she just wanted to fight for Creamline’s crucial point during their tight fourth-set duel with Chery Tiggo after receiving her first career yellow card in the Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference on Saturday at Sta. Rosa Sports Complex in Laguna.
In several instances in the critical stretch of the fourth set, the Cool Smashers could have benefitted from reviews but the league’s video challenge was unavailable due to a malfunction.
With the Crossovers trying to force a decider, Yeliz Basa tied the set for Creamline, 28-all, before she blocked Mylene Paat but it was called off the block, awarding the point to Chery Tiggo for a precarious 29-28 advantage.
As the Cool Smashers skipper, Valdez tried to contest the call, asking for a kill block. The three-time PVL MVP, however, was shown a yellow card by first referee Fernando Velarde.
The star outside spiker said she needed to stand up for her team in the absence of the challenge.
“In this kind of match, there are a lot of crucial calls. I mean, it was a tight set so you need to fight for every ball. It’s very important. It’s critical to have a video challenge but unfortunately, we didn’t experience it. But the game is super entertaining for the fans,” said Valdez in Filipino.
Valdez was fired up after receiving the yellow card, forcing another tie before Ced Domingo put on the finishing touches to complete a semifinal-clinching 25-23, 20-25, 25-12, 32-30 victory over erstwhile-unbeaten Chery Tiggo.
Moments after the game, the 29-year-old took to Twitter, taking her rare yellow card in jest.
for da 🟨 🙈✌🏼
thank you, Lord!! 💕
— Alyssa Valdez (@AlyssaValdez2) November 5, 2022
Despite playing in a game marred with questionable calls, Valdez lauded her teammates for overcoming the challenges to stay unbeaten in five games and join Chery Tiggo in the semis round.
“Heart of steel. My teammates, all the experiences I think from the AVC, the Grand Prix, and all the conferences before have all paid off with their maturity and growth,” she said. “The way I see in their eyes, they really want to finish it and they have the heart to actually fight and finish the game. As one of the seniors of the team, I’m really proud of them.”
But Valdez said they cannot stop working despite assuring a semis spot as Creamline takes on F2 Logistics on Tuesday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
“We’ll work harder definitely. The expectations from ourselves from our team are higher as we go this conference so we’ll work harder and hopefully we balance the enjoyment, having fun, and being competitive,” she said.
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