MEXICALI, Mexico, August 25, 2007.- Germany advanced to the match for the ninth place with a 3-1 victory (22-26, 27-25, 25-19, 25-16) over Puerto Rico. Germany scored with 16 blocks.
Jonas Umlauft led Germany with 21 points, including four blocks, and Christian Fromm followed with 20 tallies and three blocks. Captain Dennis Kaliberda contributed 14 points.
Ulises Maldonado was the best Puerto Rican with 11 points and Sequiel Sanchez and Omar Rivera each recorded 9 points.
In the first set, Puerto Rico started with a 3-0 lead, but quickly the Germans tied at 3-all and both teams traded points with the Europeans taking the advantage 8-7 at the first pause. Both teams maintained the same rhythm and Puerto Rico ended ahead 16-15 at the second stop. Germany took the lead 23-21 but relying on the effectives attacks by Maldonado Puerto Rico tied it up at 23. Germany was in front 24-23, but one kill by Velez followed by two errors of Germany gave the set to the Puerto Ricans 26-24.
The second set took the same route with the Germans leading 3-0 only to see how Puerto Rico evened the score at 3-3. The Germans were in front 8-7 at the first technical time-out. Maldonado, Batista and Sanchez steadily sent Puerto Rico to a 19-13 advantage. Then, the Germans sparked a comeback forcing their opponents to call for a time-out at 19-17. The blocking of Germany finally appeared for the first time tying the action at 20-all, starting a seesaw war with both teams getting to set-point. Finally, a block and spike by Kaliberda gave Germany the success 27-25.
In the third set, Germany kept playing with consistency establishing its high blocking to get an 8-6 lead. The Puerto Ricans looked out of sync against the defensive weapon of the taller opponents as Bauer, Horn and Kaliberda continued to dominate. Puerto Rico started to shorten the distance but it was too late and ended winning 25-19.
The fourth set was one-sided for Germany with Jonas Umlauft leading in offence and defence as the Europeans were on the path to a 25-16 victory. They led 8-5 at the first technical time out and were on the driver’s seat the rest of the action.