Canada defeats Mexico in Bronze Medal match



MEXICO CITY, Mexico, May 26, 2016.- Canada defeat Mexico 3-0 (25-20, 25-20, 29-27) to win the bronze medal match of the XI Men’s Pan American Cup on Thursday at the Olympic Gymnasium Juan de la Barrera in Mexico City.

Canada returns to the Pan American podium, the last time was in 2011 when they also won the bronze. Canada and Mexico secured a place in next year’s World League .

Canada held a comfortable advantage in the first with unbreakable blocking which took Mexico by surprise.  The third set was a thriller as actions were tied on numerous occasions with spectacular digs and strength in spikes from both sides.

Canada’s towering block dominated Mexico with 12-3 advantage, they also were better in serves 8-2 and in kills 37-32. Canada committed 30 errors and Mexico 22.

Canada’s top scorers were Ryley Barnes and Stephen Maar with 16 points apiece, followed by Braden Mclean with 11 points. With 14 points, Jorge Barajas was Mexico’s only player with double digits.

Brett Walsh said “the energy levels of the match got tighten in the third set and that was in Mexico’s favor being the home team with their amazing fans riding them and having their back the whole time. Mexico started to make awesome plays, making it difficult for us, with points going back and forth; it was a pretty fun battle to be a part of”.

Coach Georges Laplante said “I am very pleased the way we played tonight, we made variations in our line-up, giving a chance to other players like Ryley Barnes who made a big difference tonight. We were expecting a tough match because Mexican players always fight hard. They pushed us a lot in the end and it could have gone either way”.

Pedro Rangel of Mexico indicated “it was a complicated match, being down by two sets made us change our mentality, we thought we had nothing to lose but much to win, improving our rhythm. We played a high-leveled third set, as equals against Canada and it was important to finish on a high note looking forward next week”.

Coach Jorge Azair said “I’m satisfied, it would have been nice to win a medal, but we must close this chapter. I’m glad because we reached our goal of a good preparation for the pre-Olympic. There is much to evaluate”.