Powerful Mexico makes its way into semifinals over Dominican Republic


DURANGO, Mexico, May 23, 2019.- Powerful Mexico made its way into semifinals over Dominican Republic 3-1 (25-18, 20-25, 25-23, 25-22) at the fifth U18 Girls’ Pan American Cup in Durango, Mexico.


The home team won pool A in front a full capacity at Auditorio del Pueblo and the direct ticket to semifinals with unbeaten 3-0 record at the event that grants two berths to the FIVB Worlds Championship. Dominican Republic will face Peru in the quarterfinal round to keep their world championship dream alive.


Mexico was dominant jumping to an eight point margin (17-9) in set one, while Dominican’s reaction took some time to kick in. Actions were very close in set two, but Dominican Republic’s blockers stopped the home girls’ tough attacks.


México needed three set points to finish the third set after errors in defense and a Dominican wall. The finish was exciting with the ongoing performance by Dominicans Flormarie Heredia and Romina Cornelio facing the great execution by Mexican Marian Ovalle along with Melanie Parra.


Dominican Republic’s comfortable 12-6 margin in blocks wasn’t enough against allowing 30 points on errors to Mexico. Both teams scored 53 points on kills, while Mexico prevailed in serves 6-4 and finishing with 19 errors.


Marian Ovalle led Mexico with 20 points including 17 attacks and 2 blocks. Also contributing in the win was Melanie Parra with 14 pointss, along with Sofía Maldonado and Izabella Ceratti with 10 points each. Dominican Flormarie Heredia led all socrers with 26 points, 24 on kills; Romina Cornelio joined in scoring 20 points.


Ricardo Ponce Mexico’s Head coach spoke about what he felt with this important victory against Dominican Republic and moving directly into semifinals, “I feel great, very happy for my players that gave body and soul in this match. What we did was work with team during the morning session and practice our technique. We asked that each one needed to put their best effort and to be convinced to give everything they’ve got, no matter what the result, and that’s exactly what they did”. He also added “our strength is that anyone can contribute one or two points. Example is that Melanie’s performance was medium, she didn’t carry with the team but she solved when necessary and the rest of team fulfilled their part, proving they are capable of leading when the team needs so”.


Brazilian Alexander Ceccato, coach of Dominican Republic said he wasn’t sad with the loss “Mexico performed well; it was a good match even if my girls made too many errors. Tomorrow we face Peru and we will try to be determined. What’s important, the team never gave up”.