PRESS RELEASE 10.08.2003


Girls U18 World Championship - USA falls to Brazil

PILA, Poland, August 10, 2003 – Brazil took control of the match early and handed the USA girl’s youth national volleyball team its first loss at the FIVB Girl’s Under-18 World Championships at Mosir Hall on Sunday.

Thaisa Menezes scored a team-high 10 points and Regiane Bidias and Veronica Brito each added eight points as Brazil posted a 25-14, 25-17, 25-22 victory to remain undefeated in Pool D at 2-0.

"We worked a lot on the U.S. before the game making all of the necessary preparations, including the statistics and video, so we knew exactly what to expect," said Brazil's head coach Moura Luizomar. "We had some problems in the third set but I was confident that my team would prevail at the end."

Jordan Larson scored a match-high 11 points on 10 kills and one block for the United States, which fell to 1-1 in pool play with one match remaining against 0-2 Belarus on Monday.

"The energy level was the biggest factor today," said Team USA head coach Shelton Collier. "Yesterday morning, Brazil cruised to an easy win, and USA played the later match and we spent a lot of energy in a hard-fought win over the Czechs. We had a little trouble bouncing back for today's early morning Brazil match.

"Even in the loss, we at times did a great job of executing some tactical adjustments we made," Collier added. "I hope we can get to the final eight and have another shot at Brazil."

Nicole Britenriker added eight points on six kills, one block and one service ace for the Americans, while Sarah Florian, Nicole Fawcett and Angie McGinnis added four points apiece.

"We expected Brazil to be very strong but we also knew we can win this kind of match if we play our best," said Florian, the Team USA captain. "We are disappointed with a loss but we are confident we can bounce back and do very well in our future matches. Our team showed moments of brilliance, we played with pride and we will definitely learn from this."