PVL: Win over Creamline shows Cignal headed in right direction, says coach

Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 24 2022 06:05 PM

Cignal HD coach Shaq delos Santos is pleased with the progress made by his team in the PVL Invitational Conference. PVL Media.
Cignal HD coach Shaq delos Santos is pleased with the progress made by his team in the PVL Invitational Conference. PVL Media.

MANILA - A confidence-boosting win against Creamline last week is proof that Cignal HD is making progress in the 2022 Premier Volleyball League (PVL) Invitational Conference, coach Shaq delos Santos said.

The HD Spikers shocked the defending Open Conference champions last Thursday, taking a 25-21, 26-24, 14-25, 25-22 triumph in Santa Rosa, Laguna. Save for a letdown in the third set, the match was a display of Cignal HD's poise as they out-played the Cool Smashers in the closing stretches.

Cignal HD improved to 4-0 with the win, assuring them of a spot in the semifinal. They also ended a 10-match winning streak for Creamline dating back to the Open Conference earlier this year.

"Alam namin 'yung kayang gawin ng Creamline," delos Santos said after the match as he expressed his pride at his team's performance. "Sobrang nire-respect namin sila."

Cignal HD did not get to play the Cool Smashers in the Open Conference, as they were in separate groups during the pool phase. The HD Spikers fell in the semifinals to PetroGazz, while the Cool Smashers made it to the finals.

Their last meeting came in the 2021 PVL Open Conference in Ilocos Norte, where Creamline swept a Cignal team that was still groping for form, 25-22, 27-25, 25-19.

Delos Santos believes that his team's inspired performance against the Cool Smashers shows that their program is working, even as he insists that they have yet to fully realize their potential.

"Para sa amin, gusto rin namin talagang ma-test 'yung team namin, kung nasaan kami," said the coach. "And siguro hindi 'yun 'yung magiging basehan na okay na kami."

"Siguro 'yun 'yung magandang sign lang na nakakapagsimula kami kahit papaano, na nagiging maganda na rin 'yung flow ng team namin," he explained.

As impressive as the win was, delos Santos says his team is only just beginning its climb in the PVL. Beating a team of Creamline's caliber will only bolster their belief that they can one day reach the peak.

"Talagang nagi-start pa rin talaga 'yung team namin. Wino-work out namin lahat," delos Santos said. "Ito, isa 'to sa napakalaking bagay na siguro, kahit papaano 'yung maturity ng team, nadadagdagan."

"But alam namin na marami pang kulang. Kasi siyempre, andoon pa rin kami sa process talaga na kailangan namin na, patuloy naming pagta-trabahuhan 'yung kailangan namin lahat gawin," he added. 

The HD Spikers will return to action on Tuesday against winless Petro Gazz, where they look to avoid a letdown after their biggest win of the conference so far.