August 3, 2003 - After overcoming a tough opening set the Brazilian women's team cruised to a 3-0 (30-28, 25-13, 25-18) win over USA in Pool A of the Pan American Games.
The first set was a grueling fight, which typified the nature of this competition, before Brazil had three match points , one of which was used when a floating service from setter Danielle Lins provoked a mistake in USA reception.
Follwing the grueling forst set Brazil opened the second by jumping to a 5-0 lead when the Americans had a lot of trouble receiving the services of Lins. That was a springboard for a one-sided set where Dayse Figueredo and Rodrigues led the attack with potent spikes.
The third set was all young Fabiana Claudino, a slender thing of 193cm with tremendous leaping ability and a powerful right arm. She not only attacked fiercely but combined for a big wall at the net.
“My girls were a little nervous at the start of the match,”said Wadson Lima, the Brazilian coach. “From then on, the story was a lot different.”
“This victory tell us a lot about the quality of Brazilian Volleyball,”he added. “In Fabiana, we have here only one player of our senior national team and this team can battle for one of the top medals.”
Fabiana, 18, said she enjoyed the victory, especially the last two sets when the delight for Brazil was clear to see with on court celebrations after each one of her missile shots. She recorded 14 points with eight spikes and six blocks.
“No doubt I am very happy after this victory and I hope it is only the beginning of very good things for us in this tournament.”
Michael Herbert, the American coach said:
“”I am very optimistic about this young team and its future. I hope this game is a learning experience for us.”
Elizabeth Bachman, USA Captain, said: “We lost consistency after the first set and the Brazilians played very well. We just have to keep the focus and come back again against the rest of the teams. I think we have the team to battle for one of the medals.”
Fabiana Claudino and Katia Rodrigues were the leading attackers for the Brazilians in a match played in front of around 3,000 fans.
Nicole Branagh shared the honors of top scorer with Fabiana scoring 14 with 12 spikes.