THE semifinals of the Women’s National Basketball League (WNBL) begins on Saturday with Philippine Navy-Go for Gold facing PSI-Air Force at the Botolan Peoples Plaza in Botolan, Zambales.
The Lady Sailors battle the Lady Air Defenders in Game One of the best-of-three semifinals series at 1:30 p.m.
Taguig Lady Generals, meanwhile, face Cleon and Clyde Lady Snipers in the other semifinal series. The schedule of the series opener is still to be determined.
The Lady Sailors topped the inaugural season of the league with a 5-1 record after beating the Lady Generals, 58-57, last August 17 at the Hagonoy Sports Complex in Taguig City in the final game of the elimination round.
Andrea Tongco scored 20 points and hit the game-winning three with three seconds left in the match. Tongco’s trey completed the Lady Sailors’ comeback after scoring only two points in the first quarter and trailed by as many as 20 points in the contest.
Former National University standout Ria Nabalan scored 11 points for the Lady Sailors, who capped their elimination round campaign with five straight wins and handed the Lady Generals their first defeat of the eliminations.
The Generals slid to second place with a 5-1 record, setting up a best-of-three semifinal affair against the Lady Snipers.
National team standouts Janine Pontejos of Taguig and Afril Bernardino of Cleon and Clyde will look to lead their respective teams in the finals.
Pontejos led the league in scoring during the elimination round with 25.6 points a game, while Bernardino is fifth in the league with an average of 17.5 per contest to guide the Lady Snipers at no. 3 with a 4-2 slate.