FIVB - Volleyball World Grand Prix 2012

MATCH INFO

Thailand punish Puerto Rico again


Thailand's Onuma Sittirak attacked well with 21 points against Puerto Rico

Komaki, Japan, June 15, 2012 - To kick off round two of the Women’s 2012 World Grand Prix Thailand beat Puerto Rico for the second weekend running. The teams had faced each other the previous week in Macau with Thailand coming out on top in three sets. Puerto Rico put up a better fight this time, taking the second set, but eventually losing 3-1 (25-18, 19-25, 25-11, 25-19).

Leading Thailand’s scoring was Onuma Sittirak with 21 points, supported by Malika Kanthong with 14. For the losing Puerto Rico side it was Sarai Alvarez leading the way with 13.

The teams started out tentatively with Thailand’s Onuma notching four early scores for her side, while Stephanie Enright countered for Puerto Rico, with a hard drive that knocked Thai captain Wilavan Apinyapong off her feet for a score to tie it at 10-10. But Wilavan wasn’t fazed at all, later delivering a precision spike to put Thailand ahead 18-15, and Malika brought another to help make it 21-15. From there, Puerto Rico didn’t help their cause with a couple of offensive errors, and Onuma sealed the set with her sixth point.

Puerto Rico bounced back in the second  with stellar serving from Jetzabel Del Valle, who posted two aces as part of a six-point run that put her side ahead 11-5. They held that lead with strong attacking from Sarai Alvarez, until Thailand rallied back to 18-15 as Pleumjit Thinkaow notched her third block, this time against Enright. Not to be left out, Puerto Rico’s captain Vilmarie Mojica brought a block of her own on Thailand’s Onuma to go back five ahead, and Natalia Valentin would later come off the bench to take the second set with an ace to make it one set apiece.

Thailand found their rhythm again in the third with a six-point run of their own, capped by a laser spike from Malika, to go head 12-5. Onuma kept scoring well with a wonderful tip in the face of two blockers to make it 15-7. Another six-point run would close a dominant set for Thailand 25-11, including a well-placed ace by Malika, followed by a splendid setter dump by Nootsara.

The fourth set started out close with Puerto Rico’s Alvarez and Thailand’s Onuma both attacking well until the teams reached 10-10. But Thailand’s finesse would give them an edge as Malika placed a wonderful tip past two blockers down the line to edge ahead, with a Pleumjit spike to follow to make it 16-14. But Onuma kept her team going notching her 21st score late on, setting the stage for her captain to step in with a hard drive to close 25-19, 3 sets to 1.


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