If the first set was to dictate the touted face-off between two celebrity squads in a first-ever women’s volleyball match in the All Star Games last Sunday, August 25, at the Araneta Coliseum, it was to be a menacing match.
Yet while the Blue Team led by Julia Barretto eked out a hard-fought 27-25 win behind former Ateneo Lady Eagle and now Kapamilya current affairs host Gretchen Ho’s heroics, it was the tenacity and poise of Kim Chiu’s Red Team that prevailed in the end as they won the succeeding sets, 25-10, 25-21.
While they did suffer a heartbreaker amid Gretchen’s monstrous block of Red team reinforcement Eya Laure, who subbed for an injured and fellow Golden Tigress Ysa Jimenez, in the first set, it was all a walk in the park in the succeeding set with setter and scorer Jia Morado taking the cudgels. But it was the game MVP, Analain Lim, who scored with impunity as she notched nine successive points to close out the second set with ease.
And while Team Blue reinforcement Carly Hernandez of FEU had made a run for Team Blue with Gretchen delivering on both offense and defense, Eya and the Red team’s other reinforcement Jia, who plays for the Creamline Cool Smashers in the PVL and once an Ateneo ace setter as well, led a final binge to take the match, 25-21.
An exciting match that surely reminded spectators of real professional matches, with UST coach Kungfu Reyes mentoring the Red Team, and Ateneo’s Oliver Almandro guiding Team Blue, this confrontation of Teams Kim and Julia is certainly one for the books.
With Kim, Eya, Jia, and Analain in the Red team were Dalia Varde, Gillian Vicencio, Yasmyne Suarez, Chienna Filomeno, Vivoree Esclito, and Nikki Valdez.
Backing Julia, Gretchen and Carly in Blue were Arabella del Rosario, Ella San Andres, Aiyanna Waggoner, Ashley Colet, Pamu Pamorada, Katherine Gallo, and Loisa Andalio.