USA move one step closer to Italy
Colorado Springs, United States, May 16, 2014 – The United States improved to 2-0 in the Women’s NORCECA World Championship Pool O Qualification tournament by powering past Panama 3-0 (25-16, 25-12, 25-9) on Friday afternoon at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Chloe Ferrari contributed 12 points in the victory and Kylin Munoz added nine points. Hayley Hodson, the youngest player on the team at 17, notched eight points. Panama was paced by setter Hashlyn Cuero’s seven points.
The U.S. held advantage in all the scoring categories including 43-17 in kills, 6-2 in blocks and 10-2 in aces.
“Panama is really physical, U.S. Coach David Hunt said. “They are probably the most physical team in this tournament. Some of our players served really well. It was good to see. We’ve spent a lot of time on it.”
In the other match on Pool O, Guatemala evened its record at 1-1 keeping alive their chances of advancing to the gold medal match by defeating Honduras 3-1 (25-19, 25-19, 25-27, 25-22).
Guatemala’s Blanca Recinos sparked her squad with 21 points. Teammates Diana Arias and Stefany Bolanos contributed 15 and 14 points, respectively. Mariajosse Diaz and Caterine Leiva led Honduras with 12 points each.
Guatemala’s attack produced a 61-35 advantage in kills to go with a 9-5 margin in aces. Honduras held a slim 9-7 edge in blocks.
Guatemala (1-1) faces Panama while Honduras (0-2) closes out pool play on Saturday against hosts United States.
"We worked really well in the first two sets,” Guatemala’s Coach David Aldana Perez said. “We lost a little confidence in the third set, and our performance went down as a result, but we are excited for the next match."
The top two teams in the four-team round-robin, advance to Sunday’s gold-medal match with the winner earning a berth into the 2014 FIVB World Championship in Italy.