Cuba won the gold at Pan Am Games with sensational victory over
RIO DE JANEIRO, July 19, 2007.- The first gold medal in team sport
at the Pan American Games Rio 2007 belongs to Cuba. The Cuban
National Women’s Volleyball defeated Brazil 3-2 (25-27, 25-22,
22-25, 34-32, 17-15) in a sensational match of 2 hours 11 minutes
at the Maracanãzinho Gymnasium.
Rosir Calderon and Yumilka Ruiz were decisive for the Cuban
triumph, with 22 and 20 points respectively. The Brazilian Sheila
Castro was the match top scorer with 25 points.
In a very close and evened match, the Cuban blocking ended being
the difference. The Caribbean team had 19 blocks during the match
against 11 by Brazil and the Cuban serves (5 aces) was also more
The tie-breaker was characterized by the alternate leads on the
scoreboard. Teams changed sides with the Brazilian ahead 8-5 but
the Cubans reacted winning five of the next seven points to lead
10-9. The host team also reacted and took a 14-12 advantage but
could not capitalize two match-points.
Under the pressure of the adverse margin and the partisan crowd,
the Cubans defended against two consecutive Brazilian attacks and
turned the score 15-14 and won the gold medal in their second
chance of match-point.