Exciting five set victory for Honduras against El Salvador

SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador, November 13, 2018.- Honduras earned an exciting five set victory 3-2 (25-19, 26-24, 23-25, 22-25, 15-10) over host El Salvador at the twentieth Men’s Senior AFECAVOL Central American Championship at FESAVOL Gymnasium in San Salvador.

This was Honduras first win after four days of competition; they improved to a 1-3 record and have five points; El Salvador stands with 1-2 and seven points. Honduras started off strong, their attackers were on top of every move and jumping to a comfortable six point advantage (16-10); El Salvador on the other hand, had difficulties in coordination and miscommunication. The second set was tougher and closer, points went for both sides and El Salvador was more involved offensively, still Honduras remained on top. It was up to set three that El Salvador recovered from a seven point deficit (17-21) to extend the actions further. Tensions grew in the fourth set, for an intense lead by the host and reach the tie-break. Honduras managed the pressure better, finishing with a sizeable five point margin 15-10.

Honduras finished with 58-54 margin in spikes, 16-13 in blocks and 33 unforced errors. El Salvador committed 34 errors and both teams scored on 3 aces.

Four players of Honduras finished with double figures, outside hitters Arturo Duran and Fabrizzio Matamoros registered 18 points apiece, opposite Carlos Osorio and middle blocker Ornelio Watler scored 12 points each, and middle blocker Jose Reyes scored 12 points. Middle blocker Diego Guidos of El Salvador led all attackers with 20 points, including 9 impressive blocks. Also from El Salvador, opposite Carlos Rodriguez and outside hitter Francisco Hernandez scored 16 and 13 points accordingly.

On day five of the event, El Salvador (1-2) will face Costa Rica (3-1) while Honduras (1-3) has the day off.

Opposite Carlos Osorio of Honduras said they struggled and it was a good duel “we were overconfident because we were in the lead, this has been happening for years and things start to complicate; thank God we got the result and we must continue working. Our concentration made the difference, we followed our coaches’ instructions to where to stand, where to serve, how to move and defend; the morning practice was based on this”.  

Cuban Juan Andrés León, coach of Honduras expressed “it was a really good match, the game level was similar. Central America has a good level and it should be respected, the referees also should have level”.

Franklin Flores setter of El Salvador indicated “we came from behind improving our reception and our attitude. Honduras previously lost all their matches and we couldn’t be losing, so our efforts were harder and changing our offense to the sides. Honduras had more confidence, they had nothing to lose and no pressure, and we pressure ourselves because we are the hosts. It’s important to win tomorrow’s match against Costa Rica to keep fighting for a medal”.

Luis Gómez (Chichi) assistant coach of El Salvador defined the game in one word “anxiety”; he added that his team lost control fast “this is competitive volleyball and you must have your mind always on the game. Honduras had lost all their matches and we had already won a match, the support from our fans. We came from behind in all five sets, we were able to calm the team but the players were desperate, while Honduras was on fire”.