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Cuba beats Guatemala to complete Day One at Pinar del Rio

PINAR DEL RIO, Cuba, November 10, 2017 – Host Cuba beat Guatemala in straight sets 3-0 (25-15, 25-15, 25-17) in the first day of NORCECA B Qualification Final Tournament of the FIVB 2018 Men’s World Championship on Friday.

Miguel Lopez Castro and Marlon Yang Herrera were the most aggressive weapons for the Cuban side finishing with 17 and 12 points, respectively. Lopez Castro included four services winners among their tally. Andy Leonardo was the top Guatemalan scorer with 15 points.

Cuba was the dominant side on the court today with advantage in all the scoring skills during the match.

The home side scored with 35 attacks to 29 for the defeated team. They also held wide margins in blocking 9-3 and also in serving aces 7-2. The Cubans scored on 24 opponent’s errors while committing only 14 for the entire contest.

The competition continues on Saturday at 19th of November Hall with Puerto Rico playing Guatemala and Cuba going against Mexico.

The NORCECA B Qualification Tournament offers the last two berth to next year’s FIVB World Championship in Italy and Bulgaria. Should Puerto Rico and Cuba win their matches of Saturday will secure those two tickets.


Nicolás Vives, home team coach, "although we should not take easy any rival, we took advantage so all the boys played and make some necessary changes to make the formation more ideal, that's why we moved the players even in different positions".


"Tomorrow is with Mexico, another type of rival, but my pupils are well physically and very stimulated to win this competition."


His captain, Liván Osoria said "team work" helped us to win in, since we have been playing for seven weeks outside the seven hired and the others in Havana, but we are all in an terrific shape, the substitutes today fulfilled their role and we hope to win the other meetings. "


The Guatemalan technical director Reider Lucas acknowledged the game was one-sided, "but we knew we would face a solid and powerful team, with a great level of play and enormous power."


"My team enjoyed the match, they won the balls they could, however all of them are happy because we came so that my pupils know this level, something that is hard for us in our area, and they continue to learn and accumulate experience".


Gerardo González, the captain, said his team performed well in tune with what they have trained, really the Cubans are very good, several of them play abroad, none of us, but we played with good spirits and things went well. In this tournament we focus on to win the Central American Games in December. "