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Panama claims in five sets first victory


MANAGUA, Nicaragua, December 12, 2017. – Panama claimed their first victory at the men’s Volleyball tournament of the eleventh Central American Games Managua 2017 after defeating Belize in five sets 3-2 (25-21, 25-22, 23-25, 20-25, 15-12) at Alexis Argüello sport complex.


Panama was able to hold off their opponent in sets one and two, but got into difficulties when Belize started to enjoy more the game while their performance improved. This was Panama’s second consecutive five setter, they previously lost to Nicaragua.


Panama improves their record 2-1 and has five points; Belize drop to 0-2 with 2 points.


Belize held a huge advantage in kills with 62-49 margin, as well as in blocks with 10-5 margin but they allowed Panama to score on their 49 errors. Panama did better in aces by a slim 5-3 advantage.


Panama had three players with double-digits, with outside hitter Domingo Avila leading with

16 points all in kills, outside hitter Oswald Marshall scored 14 points on 13 kills and one ace, and opposite Donaldo Ureña contributed with 11 points. With a match-high, outside hitter Bryton Codd of Belize scored 24 points, on 21 kills, 2 blocks and one ace; and opposite Karym Coleman scored 23 points on 21 kills and 2 blocks.


On day four of the event, Panama (1-2) will face Costa Rica (1-2) and Belize (0-2) plays against El Salvador (1-0).


Captain of Panama Domingo Avila: “Most of our players are young and they easily lose concentration; the most experienced players are always talking to them so they won’t relax. I believe the team is adjusting as the tournament develops. Today we did better in blocking and a little in defense as well as serves”.


Head coach of Panama Eugenio Ortiz: “My players were anxious because of the fact that we were the ones who needed to win after two losses. Our serves were less effective as the match developed and Belize had the opportunity to attack more. We recovered from a four or five deficit in the sets we lost but we came short. The last set was very close”.


Opposite player of Belize Karym Coleman: “We thought we were going to win because we put up a big fight to comeback from two sets down and reach a fifth set. Our attacking picked up and we felt our momentum in sets three and four, we kept the ball moving and our blocking also kicked in. We should not let the next matches stretch from three sets”.


Head coach of Belize Albert Humes: “In the two sets we won, the team focused on what we wanted to do, we played volleyball and enjoyed what we were doing. During time-outs we were trying to motivate our players to simplify their moves and not start inventing. Panama succeeded because we got into better shape too late in the game”.