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Chinese newcomers upset former Shanghai Open champions
Puerto Rico sealed the last berth to the FIVB Volleyball Girls’ U18 World Championship in Thailand with an overwhelming victory over hosts Guatemala 3-0 (25-6, 25-13, 15-9) as they won Pool B at the U18 Girls Pan American Cup on Wednesday.
Puerto Rico were dominant with a colossal advantage in service points (20-1) and in blocking (9-0). Patricia Montero and Wilmarie Rivera with 14 and 13 points respectively were Puerto Rico’s best scorers.
“Qualifying to the World Championship is a celebration I can’t explain, we reached our goal. Today our serves were aggressive and the job efficient” said Wilmarie Rivera of Puerto Rico.
Estefanie Bethancourt of Guatemala indicated “we battled the entire game and we’ll continue to do so, we are excited to play against teams of higher category”.
Juan Carlos Rodriguez coach of Puerto Rico was more than satisfied with their qualification, “we came for this; it was hard work and a long preparation. We planned for fast rallies and it gave us the result as expected.”
“Congratulations to Puerto Rico, they are a strong team as well as the rest and Guatemala must take advantage of this opportunity to see our deficiencies and continue to work” expressed Julio Dominguez of Guatemala.
The U18 Girls Pan American Cup was used by NORCECA to determine the winner of the last of its four vacancies to the FIVB Volleyball Girls’ U18 World Championship. The best NORCECA team, not yet qualified, clinched a ticket to Thailand. With Puerto Rico, finishing four points ahead of Chile, eight ahead of Colombia and 14 in front of Guatemala in Pool B, they booked the remaining NORCECA ticket.
The Dominican Republic, Brazil, Argentina and Peru in Pool A had already qualified for Thailand at respective continental qualification tournaments in 2012.
In the U18 Girls Pan American Cup quarterfinals on Thursday, Puerto Rico play Peru and on the other side, Argentina faces Chile.
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