June 8, 2004 - The Dominican Republic, runners-up in the 2003 Pan American Cup, go to this year’s edition as one of the three NORCECA Women’s teams qualified for the Summer Olympic Games. USA and Cuba are the others.
The Dominicans grabbed their Olympic ticket after finishing with a 3-0
perfect record without losing a set during the South American Continental Championship last January in Caracas, Venezuela.
In the Venezuelan capital, the squad of Jorge Garbey rolled over Argentina, Venezuela and Peru, three of the 10 teams that will be participating in the event to be played in Mexicali and Tijuana, Mexico on June 18-26.
The champions of the 2003 Pan American Games returned to their country after a combined training period with the French team in Montpelier, France, and are confident of finishing as one of the top four squads in the Mexican event.
The Dominicans began their Olympic preparation playing in the Yeltsin Cup in Russia back in April where they finished in fourth place. They lost to Cuba in four sets in the semifinals and were defeated by Azerbaijan in five sets in the match for the bronze medal.
During the World Cup in Japan last November, the Dominican Republic finished in 10th place with victories over Argentina, Egypt and Poland, who are the European champions.
In the 2003 Pan American Cup in Saltillo, Mexico, the Dominicans lost to USA in the match for the gold medal (25-23, 25-18, 25-17) after scoring a stunning victory over Cuba in the semifinals coming from two sets down to prevail 24-26, 23-25, 25-21, 25-16, 25-17. It was the first triumph for the Dominicans over Cuba in 31 years.
Milagros Cabral was elected the MVP of the event and also the best attacker and Evelyn Carrera was the choice as best libero.
The Dominican squad will consist of Annerys Vargas, Rosalin Angeles,
Yudelkis Bautista, Cindy Rondon, Evelyn Carrera, Alexandra Caso, Sofia
Heredia, Juana Savinon, Bethania de la Cruz, Milagros Cabral, Juana
Gonzalez, Francia Jackson, Laritza Reyes, Prisilla Rivera, Cosiris
Rodriguez, Kenia Moreta, Dahiana Burgos and Johanna Luna.