Superstar Alyssa Valdez celebrated her birthday in style after leading Bali Pure to a big win over Pocari Sweat in Game 1 of the 13th Shakey’s V-League Open semifinals Wednesday night at the FilOil Flying V Centre.
Valdez fired 24 points off 19 hits, 4 aces and a block as the Purest Water Defenders avenged their loss to the Lady Warriors with the 25-20, 25-19, 26-24 victory before throngs of fans at the venue.
Grethcel Soltones rebounded from a shaky performance against Pocari last Saturday night by posting a rare triple-double with 11 points, 10 digs and 10 excellent receptions while Jem Ferrer outdueled Gyzel Sy anew with 34 excellent sets.
After coming back from 2 sets down to beat Bali Pure in their first matchup, the Lady Warriors were unable to summon that spirit anew, with Myla Pablo going cold for the second seeds.
Michele Gumabao and Elaine Kasilag each delivered 11 points, but Pocari would have to win Game 2 if they are to live another day in the tournament. — By Josiah Albelda