USA and Dominican Republic to play for the gold
Both United States and Dominican Republic have won twice the title in the past eleven editions of the intercontinental tournament. The Americans have been in the finals three previous times while the Dominicans have played for the gold in seven past occasions.
USA cruised to a straight set victory over Brazil while Dominican Republic brushed aside Argentina also in three frames. The losing teams will play for the bronze medal.
In other matches of Saturday, Cuba and Puerto Rico both secured berths in the 2014 FIVB World Grand Prix and now will face each other for the fifth position. Cuba overcame hosts Peru in four sets while Puerto Rico also needed four to outlast Canada.
In the consolation round for the 9-12 positions, Colombia edged Costa Rica in five sets while Trinidad & Tobago swept past Mexico.
United States 3, Brazil 0
Defending champions United States advanced to the gold medal match against Dominican Republic following their straight sets (25-11, 25-20, 25-22) victory over Brazil. The U.S. Coah Karch Kiraly used mostly bench players after the one-side first set and dominated the contest against the young Brazilians. Rachael Adams topped the Americans with 12 points, including six blocks, while Lauren Paolini and Keyly Murphy each contributed 11 points. Brazil’s Gabriela Guimaraes finished with 14 points. The winners held 12-5 and 6-2 advantages in the blocking and aces categories and also had the top hand in attacks 46-35.
Dominican Republic 3, Argentina 0
Dominican Republic advanced to the gold medal match defeating Argentina 25-18, 25-18, 25-11. The victory allowed the Dominican team to secure a return to the podium they missed last year for the first time in the history of the competition when finished in fourth place in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. The load of the winning offense was shared by Prisilla Rivera, Candida Arias and Bethania De la Cruz with 13, 12 and 11 points respectively. Annerys Vargas chipped in with eight. Paula Nizetich topped Argentina with 11 points and Emilce Sosa had 7. The winners held advantages of 40-28 in attacks, 9-6 in blocks and 5-2 in the service aces category.
Cuba 3, Peru 1
Cuba kept booked a spot in the 2014 Grand Prix defeating hosts Peru 3-1 (18-25, 25-16, 25-15, 25-16) in a match for the 5-to-8 positions. Rosanna Giel with 20 points led four Cubans with double figures in the scores. Sulian Matienzo had 15 points while Ana Cleger and Yoana Palacios added 13 and 11 respectively. Peru’s Raffaela Camet and Diana Soto each had 10 points in the losing effort. The Cubans outblocked the Peruvians 18-10 and also topped their rivals 6-3 in service winners.
Puerto Rico3, Canada 1
The siblings Karina and Sheila Ocasio combined to score 36 points leading Puerto Rico to a 3-1 (27-25, 18-25, 25-17, 25-19) victory over Canada and to a ticket to the 2014 FIVB World Grand Prix. Karina registered 21 points and Sheila had 15 while Yarimar Rosa contributed 9 points to the win. The Canadians scored with 16 blocks to 13 by Puerto Rico. Canada’s Jaimie Thibeault had 18 points, including seven blocks, in the losing effort. Lisa Barclay and Kyla Richey finished with 14 and 13 points for the Canadians.
Trinidad & Tobago 3, Mexico 0
Trinidad & Tobago swept past Mexico 25-17, 25-22, 26-24 in a consolation match for the 9-12 positions. Channon Thompson led all the players in the game with 21 points for the winners, followed by Krystle Esdelle with 18. Darlene Ramdin and Sinead Jack added 12 and 10 respectively. Samantha Bricio and Alejandra Isiordia finished with 15 and 10 points for Mexico. The taller Trinidadians held a 13-7 margin in the blocking stats.
Colombia 3, Costa Rica 2
Colombia overcame Costa Rica in five sets 35-33, 15-25, 20-25, 25-22, 15-6 in a consolation match for the 9-12 positions. The score of the first set tied the second highest scoring set in the history of the Pan American Cup. Andrea Estrada and Margarita Martinez finished with 19 and 14 points for the winners while Ivonne Montaño and Melissa Rangel added 13 and 10. Costa Rica’s Verania Willis had a match-high 30 points in the losing effort.