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Brazil’s block party

Ana Patricia Silva (left) of Brazil blocks against Canada´s Megan McNamara in the gold medal match at the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games Tuesday.

Nanjing, China, August 27, 2014 - After every block on center court, the public address announcer played a special “My block” soundtrack.  Right on cue, the fans threw both hands in the air, mimicking the motion of a block.

Fans ended up with sore arms whenever Brazil played, thanks to Ana Patricia Silva. At 193 cm (6-foot-4), she is the tallest female beach volleyball player at the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games.  She turns every match into a block party, using her length to reject numerous spikes from her opponents.

“She’s a beast at the net,” said American Skylar Caputo.  “It’s really tough to hit around her.”

Opponents have gotten noticeably frustrated at their inability to spike the ball past Ana Patricia.

“We try to change speeds and hit the ball higher,” said Switzerland’s Dunja Gerson.  “But she seems to always get to the ball.”

Ana Patricia does much more than just block.  She also delivers powerful spikes, and she is surprising athletic on defense for somebody her size.

“She does it all,” Gerson said.  “She is tough to play against.”

Ana Patricia and her teammate, Eduarda Lisboa, led Brazil to the first ever Youth Olympic Games beach volleyball gold medal after winning Pool B.

“There are no words to describe how happy we are,” Ana Patricia said.  “We did our best and we brought home the gold.”

Only 15-years-old, Ana Patricia started her career as an indoor Volleyball player.  She is still learning how to play Beach Volleyball, which is a frightening thought for opponents.

“She’s only been playing a couple of years, and she’s already one of the best players in the world,” said American Zana Muno.  “She’s only going to get better.”


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