Aruba captures third place at WCH Group E qualifier


GRAND CAYMAN, Cayman Islands, October 7, 2012.- Aruba captured the bronze medal of the NORCECA-E First Round Tournament of the 2014 FIVB Men’s World Championship following their 3-2 (21-25, 25-20, 11-25, 25-16, 15-13) win over host Cayman Islands.


Daniel Mitchel with 17 points, 11 of them in attacks and 6 in blocks topped Aruba’s offense along with Frank Meermans who contributed with 16 points in attacks. Keeble Knight and Olney Thompson finished with 17 and 16 points respectively for Cayman Islands.


Both sides were fired up as the last spot available for the next round in the world championships qualifiers was in stake, so a hard offensive strategy was shown on the court. Cayman Islands’ numbers had a big advantage over the bronze medalists, and they still carried with the defeat: (16-7) in the blocking category and (7-2) in serving points.


“Aruba won because we trusted each other, this was essential. We began a little slow but we were able to keep in a good mood to recover and basically follow our coaches’ instructions, it wasn’t easy” expressed Eargenell De Cuba.


Olney Thompson was disappointed and couldn’t really explain what happened “I was just trying to concentrate but unfortunately I wasn’t able to finish the match because a small injury, I think I could have contributed a lot more, it’s too bad for the team that the captain was taken out.”


John Van Der Lee began congratulating the hosts because their players aren’t young and they did a commendable job, “I knew that if the match extended our chances to win were higher because of our age; we came here with a purpose, to advance to the next round and we fulfilled it.”


“It’s a tough loss for Cayman Islands, we did play very well my guys tried really hard, especially in the third set but in the beginning of the fourth Aruba took advantage from the beginning and it came downhill from there on, at the end Olney injury damaged us” said Keith Higgins.