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United States defeats Dominican Republic to win Pool A


SAN JOSE, Costa Rica, May 10, 2017. – United States defeated Dominican Republic 3-1 (25-22, 21-25, 25-22, 25-21) to win Pool A at the U20 Women’s Pan American Cup on Wednesday night at Gimnasio Nacional of San Jose, Costa Rica.


Dominican Republic’s 53-41 advantage in attacks wasn’t enough to hold off spirited United States’ players. The match kicked off with one set for each side and then United States pressured Dominican blockers damaging their opponents’ defense to finish on top.


United States won Pool A with 2-0 record and eight points; they will wait for the result between Costa Rica and Puerto Rico to determine if they have to play quarterfinals or earn a direct spot in semifinals.  


United Stated out-blocked Dominican Republic by 14-11 margin; they held advantage of 4-3 in aces and committed 23 unforced errors, less than Dominican’s 37.


Elizabeth Hall of United States registered 14 points, followed by middle Regan Pittman with 10 points; while Mackenzi May and Brionne Butler contributed with 9 points each. Madeline Guillen of Dominican Republic scored a match-high of 21 points, Vielka Peralta and Geraldine Gonzalez added 19 and 11 points respectively.


Khalia Lanier, United States’ captain: “We played with more emotion because we have a lot of history playing against the Dominican team. I know last year we lost to them to qualifier for worlds so that’s why we wanted to come out strong and make a statement. United States will try to stay consistent and continue to fight for our goal to qualify to the world championship”.


Yokaty Perez, Dominican Republic’s captain: “Both teams played well, we had a better attitude tonight than the one he had against Argentina. We couldn’t close to finish on top, we were always close in the scores but finally the price of our errors cost us the match”. 


Jerritt Elliott, United States’ Head Coach: “Dominican’s played really well defensively, they put a ton of pressure on us tonight and number 12 (Madeline Guillen) was unstoppable. We just tried to stay steady and try to slow up their outsides; it was difficult. Finally in set three we did some adjustments and get our system working. This was the toughest pool, sometimes the pressure is good and sometimes it’s not, we are trying to get to a higher level”.


Wagner Pacheco, Dominica Republic’s Head Coach: “I consider that not having the pressure to qualify to the world championship, like United States and Argentina, made my players perform lightly. Our opponents in pool-play were strong. I’m sad because we failed too many serves, we attacked very well and I believe we did a good job against a strong team like United States”.