Dominican Republic Advances to Semifinals with Win over T&T
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado, September 29, 2017 –
Dominican Republic advanced to the semifinals of the NORCECA
Men’s Continental Championship with a 25-18, 25-22, 25-21
victory over Trinidad & Tobago on Friday at the U.S. Olympic
Dominican Republic improved to 2-1 and will face Mexico (3-0) in
Saturday’s semifinal at 5 p.m. MT. Trinidad & Tobago (1-2) will
play in a classification match for fifth-seventh place.
Dominican Republic led in spikes (44-34), blocks (6-5) and aces
Dominican Republic opposite Pedro Garcia led all scorers with 18
points on a match-high 17 attacks and one block. Middle blocker
Jose Caceres added 12 points, including three blocks.
Middle blocker Marc Honore led Trinidad & Tobago with nine
points on six spikes and three blocks.
After losing the first set by seven, Trinidad & Tobago took a
7-4 lead in the second set and had the match tied at 19-19
before Dominican Republic pulled ahead. Trinidad & Tobago
trailed by one at 22-21 before Dominican Republic got the win.
Dominican Republic Head Coach Gladston Samuels: "We don't block.
We don't block. Sometimes good, sometimes ... up and down the
same every day, but we win and I'm happy. The match was very
close. I think our team is better than them technically. Our
team is better, but we don't block. Tomorrow we have to play
better, much better because Mexico is playing very good, very
consistent. We have to play much better."
Dominican Republic Team Captain Wilfrido Hernandez: "Even though
we are a young core of players with 19 and 20 and 24-year-olds,
we have had a really good roll with the team and you can see the
improvement through the tournament now on our third match.
Yesterday we had a meeting and we talked about the need to get
more players involved in the offense to have a more cohesive
offensive group. Today you could see the results. We were more
in sync offensively."
Trinidad & Tobago Head Coach Sean Morrison: “We didn’t play a
complete game today. They need to play together. We have one
point when we’re down. Then when we’re up, we’re up. I want to
play a lot stronger together when we’re down; keeping the
momentum high, don’t let it drop. We had a lead in the second
set and we let it go. Less errors win the game and we made more
Trinidad & Tobago Captain Ryan Stewart: “It’s not finished for
us. We still have more work to do. We could still qualify for
the next round. So that’s our goal now, for sure. We need to
improve our counter attacks in the next match.”