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Puerto Rico claims vital triumph over Guatemala in World Qualifier

PINAR DEL RÍO, Cuba, November 11, 2017 – Puerto Rico defeated Guatemala in straight sets 3-0 (25-19, 25-20, 25-18), to claim a vital result that puts them on the verge of  getting of the two tickets available at this NORCECA Group B Qualifying Tournament to the FIVB Men's World Championship 2018.

In the Hall November 10th of this western city, the Puerto Ricans added their second victory (they beat Mexico 3-0 on Friday) with outstanding offensive work of the opposite Jean C. Ortiz and corner attacker Ezequiel Cruz, both with double digits with 14 and 13 points, respectively.

However, the top scorer of the match was the opposite Guatemalan Andy Leonardo, who scored 15.

The Puerto Ricans were superior in attack (33-27), blocking (10-5) and service (5-2), and made fewer errors than their opponents (23-27).

The coach of the winners, Ramón Hernández, expressed his satisfaction "because we took today a very important step to qualify, but we have the commitment of tomorrow to give a good show against Cuba, a young but very powerful team, and it should be a very nice game.”

His captain Angel Perez expressed joy "because we have gone through many difficulties to reach this moment, we hope to be completed with a triumph of Cuba today. It is something special because it would be my fourth World Championship, it is a victory of the team and especially for our people."

Meanwhile Reider L. Mora showed his satisfaction despite the setback "since we faced a rival motivated by what his victory meant, we tried to do everything as well as possible, we made some mistakes but in the end we won with this new experience".

Gerardo Gonzalez, captain of the Central Americans, said that "we did not expect to play so well, although we missed a lot in the key points at the end of the set, but happy for the resistance that we gave to the Puerto Ricans for moments."