Guatemala cools Suriname for Pool M gold
PARAMARIBO, Suriname, June 16, 2013 - Jeyson Flores and captain
Oscar Daniel Garcia led a short-handed but balanced Guatemala
attack to a hard fought 3-1 (25-22, 25-23, 24-26, 25-21) triumph
over hosts Suriname to take the gold medal of the NORCECA
Second Round Group M of Men’s Qualifiers to the 2014 FIVB World
Volleyball Championship in Poland.
Less than 12 hours earlier, Guatemala had also defeated the host
country 3-0 to reach the final, and once there, the Reider
Lucas-coached Central Americans withstood a determined challenge
from the host, winning the critical points to secure their lone
automatic ticket from the group to the third round.
Flores and Garcia, both ended with 15 points which included 14
and 12 spikes respectively, while the latter also had three
blocks in the marathon encounter which lasted two hours and 13
The duo of Moises Santos and Andy Blanco also chipped in with
ten points each, Brandon Franco eight, and Gerardo Paz six, for
the Guatemalans who despite having only nine players and being
shorter in height went toe-to-toe in spikes, 55-each, while
being out blocked 14-2 and overwhelmed in service aces, 4-2.
However, where the Guatemalans lacked in power, they made up
with accuracy as they only committed 19 errors to Suriname’s 32,
which proved vital in the end result.
For Suriname which was in with a chance to win each of the other
sets, but faltered in the closing stages. Gino Naarden with 23
points, comprising 21 spikes and Keven Sporkslede, with 22,
inclusive of 18 spikes, were the game’s top two scorers.
The trio of captain, Roberto Joval, Clyde Fraser and Marc Flu
with seven, six and six points respectively also did their best
to give Suriname the win, but in the end they came up short.
Suriname, despite losing the match still has a chance to qualify
for the second round, but will only do so as one of the four
best second placed teams from the six groups based on the
NORCECA rankings at the end of January 2014.
Speaking afterwards, Joval admitted that Guatemala played a very
strong match overall and put its best effort out, but just could
not get the win.
With respect to failing to seize the chances given when the sets
were very close, Joval said he thinks his team did have the
fighting spirit mentally to overcome a very determined Guatemala
side. “We lacked that killer instinct needed to close out the
sets,” he said.
Garcia said he was very proud to be captain of the Guatemala
team because of what the team had accomplished.
“From the match we played against Suriname in the morning we
knew the final was going to be very tough and we prepared well
and executed our game plan.
Jerry Slijngard, Suriname’s coach said his team would have like
to the overall winners but unfortunately his players’ best
effort on the night was not good enough for a very good
“For us it’s all part of a learning experience. We have a young
team and there is a lot of room for improvement.”
Reider Lucas, the Cuban-born coach of Guatemala first
congratulated both teams on a well fought match.
Lucas noted that he was happy that his team played with a lot of
heart and effort and was able to do all the little technical
things correctly to get the win.
“We knew that from the first match against Suriname we needed to
improve on the little things and we did that.
Lucas also credited his team’s preparations for the tournament
as a key to their victory.