FIVB - Women's Volleyball World Cup 2011

MATCH INFO

Priddy block party key to USA win over Cuba


The USA can celebrate after a tough win over Cuba

Tokyo, Japan, December 3, 2011 - Cuba took their 6-3 record in the 2011 FIVB Men’s World Cup up against a tough USA squad at Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium on Saturday. While they still had a mathematical chance at a top three finish, the USA would officially put that out of reach with a 3-2 win (25-20, 14-25, 25-18, 22-25, 15-11).

Leading the USA in scoring was Matthew Anderson with 25 points, three for aces. Acting captain Reid Priddy was the most impressive player scoring 18 points, including six key blocks, nearly all on Cuba’s key weapon Fernando Hernandez Ramos on plays which swung many points to the USA that made the difference in the match. Cuba was led by their young guns Wilfredo Leon Venero and the aforementioned Hernandez, who both scored 21 points. Isbel Mesa Sandobal had five blocks for the Cubans in a solid defensive effort.

Men’s World Cup Results/Standings, Match Info, Photos or Live Scoring

The USA started off with strong serving by Ryan Millar, who dropped an ace early helping his side to a 4-0 lead. They would keep that cushion with a Priddy spike and a Perdomo drive long let them extend the lead to 12-7. Priddy would post a stubborn block on the hard-hitting Hernandez to go up 20-15, and despite a pair of strikes from Leon late (he had six points in the set), the USA would take the set 25-20.

A resilient Cuba bounced back to start the second set with great serving by Hernandez, who dropped a hard ace, and Leon, who delivered two blocks on Evan Patak to help his team go up 10-4. The USA gradually scraped their way back on a Priddy strike that cut the lead to 14-11 as Cuba made some mistakes mid-set. But three scores by Yassel Perdomo Naranjo late put Cuba in control again 20-12. The USA handed Cuba set point on a mis-timed attack, letting a pass fall flat. Cuba, in contrast, was anything but flat in the set, a Mesa spike punctuating a dominant set 25-14, one set a piece.

The high-jumping Henry Bell Cisnero was attacking well to start the third set, and a wonderful block by Mesa on Priddy gave them a 9-6 edge. But three strikes by Anderson brought them back and Priddy’s fourth block (again on Hernandez) and a Holmes stuff on Bell gave them a 16-13 lead. From there Anderson was unstoppable, dropping six of his nine points late, including two consecutive aces to help close 25-18, going up two sets to one.

Hernandez wasn’t about to let Cuba go down without a fight, attacking furiously to start the fourth, helped by Mesa who posted his fourth block on Patek to go up 8-5. But Priddy would one-up Mesa, posting his fifth block on Hernandez (again), as Cuba committed a flurry of errors letting the USA jump ahead 16-14. But they bounded back to go ahead, but Anderson’s third ace tied it just as quick. Two scores by Perdomo late gave Cuba the edge they need, and a tie-up at the net fell in their favor to give them the set 25-22, sending the match to a tie-break.

Hernandez scored three early in the fifth, but Priddy would put a yet another stuff on him (his sixth block) to help the USA up 8-6 at the break. Cuba drew even 10-10 with a stunning Perdomo block on Anderson, but three costly errors from proved too costly as Millar’s second ace and a final spike from Priddy took it 15-11, clinching the match 3-2.


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