The Creamline Cool Smashers are the queens of Philippine volleyball once again as they swept the visiting KingWhale-Taipei in straight sets, 25-21, 25-19, 25-8, to capture the Premier Volleyball League Invitational Conference crown on Sunday crowd at the SM Mall of Asia Arena.

While it might have looked easy, it was anything but for the Cool Smashers as they had to go through some tense moments, particularly in the second frame when the Taiwanese fought back from an opening set setback and took the last of their two six-point leads at 17-11 on a Kyle Negrito service miscue.

But Chang Chih-Hsuan’s own flawed serve in the ensuing play sparked a Creamline run that the Cool Smashers would sustain until the end of the 80-minute match as they countered with a decisive 14-2 binge that pushed the Open Conference champions to the threshold of another title.

They kept the momentum of that big assault, racing to an 11-3 lead in the third and cruised to the trouble-free win. It took Creamline’s designated closer to finish off the visiting squad as Alyssa Valdez, bucking an ankle sprain, blasted in a kill that hit the arm of a KWT defender and into the stands.

Jema Galanza, who teamed up with Carlos to anchor their first set win, finished with 13 points while Valdez wound up with nine points.

Celine Domingo made an impact with 11 points and was named the Finals MVP for her solid performance on the net that saw her churn out four block points.

The win also gave Creamline a shot at the Asian Volleyball Confederation Championship for Women, which unfolds August 21 at the Philsports Arena in Pasig.

Earlier, Cignal HD overcame all odds – the absence of two key players, a two-set deficit and a huge hole in the third – as it hacked out an improbable 17-25, 20-25, 27-25, 25-22, 15-5 victory over a luckless PLDT to clinch third place honors, matching its finish in the Open Conference.

The awardees in the mid-season tournament were Valdez and Ces Molina of Cignal (best outside spikers) and PLDT’s Mika Reyes and Dell Palomata (best middle blockers), while KWT’s Qiu Shi-Qing took the best libero plum and ace setter Liao Yi-Jen snared the best setter plum.