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Brazil and Canada advance to YOG semifinals

Megan McNamara (right) hits the Mikasa past Skylar Caputo of the United States as the twin sisters from Canada ousted the Americans from the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games.

Nanjing, China, August 25, 2014 - Brazil and Canada advanced to the semifinals of the 2014 Nanjing Youth Olympic Games by winning on a sunny Monday afternoon at the Nanjing Sports Park Complex.

Brazil won a hard-fought match over South American rivals Argentina, 2-0 (26-24, 21-14), to move on to the semifinals.

“Argentina made this a very tough match,” said Brazil’s Eduardo Santos Lisboa. 

Brazil’s Ana Patricia Silva, the tallest women’s player at the 2014 Nanjing Youth Olympic Games at 6-foot-4 (193 cm), made life difficult for Argentina, recording several key blocks in the second set to inspire the Brazilians. 

“We fought as equals, so we are happy,” Argentina’s Irene Varasio. “Nothing went wrong, they were just better than us.”

Lisboa has now won 17 consecutive matches, including the gold medal at the FIVB Beach Volleyball U19 World Championships in Porto, Portugal.

Brazil will play the winner of Austria vs. Russia in the semifinals on August 26.

“Right now we will rest and focus on our next match,” Ana Patricia said. 

In the other quarterfinal of the afternoon session, Canada moved on by defeating their North American rivals, the United States, 2-1 (14-21, 21-18, 15-8).

“This feels amazing,” said Canada’s Megan McNamara. “We did our best to overcome our bad start.”

The Canadian twins, bronze medalists at the FIVB U19 World Championships, kept their composure after losing the first set.

“We were pretty nervous about this match,” said Canada’s Nicole McNamara. “Once we took a timeout, we calmed down and felt better.”

The United States finish the tournament tied for fifth.

“This was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” said Team USA’s Zana Muno. “I hate losing and this stings now, but one day we will look back at being fifth at the Youth Olympics and it will be pretty cool.”

Canada will play the winner of Germany vs. Czech Republic in the semifinals on Tuesday. 

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