Monaco and Chela advance to the semis at the VTR Open

Top seeds Juan Monaco and Juan Ignacio Chela were both winners on Friday and advanced to the semifinals at the VTR Open tennis event.

Monaco, the No. 1 seed from Argentina, overcame a first-set loss to Albert Montanes, the tournament's fifth seed, to take a 3-6, 6-1, 6-1 victory.

Monaco had never beaten the Spaniard in two prior meetings and it looked like he would fall again, but used a dominating final two sets to take the win and will now try to reach his third finals at this event.

He also reached the title contest of this clay-court event in 2010 at Santiago, and 2008.

Chela, the second seed, outlasted Brazil's Joao Souza 5-7, 7-6 (8-6), 6-1 in a match that lasted three hours. The Argentinean staved off 10-of-13 break chances by Souza and converted on 4-of-8 of his own, including three in the third set, en route to the semis.

In other quarterfinal action, seventh-seeded Carlos Berlocq grounded qualifier and fellow Argentine Federico Delbonis 6-3, 6-4, and Frenchman Jeremy Chardy downed Portugal's Frederico Gil 6-2, 7-6 (7-5).

Monaco will face off against Chardy in the semis, while Chela will do battle with Berlocq.

The 2012 Vina del Mar champion will collect $71,900.