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Dominican Republic wins NORCECA Group A

SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic, October 15, 2017 – Host Dominican Republic defeated Puerto Rico 3-0 (26-24, 25-21, 25-15) to conclude the NORCECA Group A Qualification in the first position on Sunday in front of 5,000 spectators at Ricardo Arias Pavilion.

Both teams were already qualified to the FIVB Women’s World Championship 2018 to be held in Japan.

 Annerys Vargas who finished the match with 13 points, including 6 blocks, was the best scorer for the winners while Bryaelin Martinez contributed 11 points in the victory. Gina Mambru and Bethania de la Cruz added 9 and 8 points, respectively.

Stephanie Enright led Puerto Rico with 12 points. Day Santana and Neira Ortiz each scored 9 points in the losing cause.

The winners led in blocks 12-9 while the losers outserved their opponents 5-0.

Marcos Kwiek, Coach of Dominican Republic: “I think we played to win 3-0, but we started bad in the first set. We know that we have a lot of power in attack but at the beginning we couldn’t receive. When we stabilized the reception we were able to adjust our offense working with our middle blockers, In the third set I noticed Puerto Rico was tires and we could close the match.

Bethania De la Cruz, Captain of Dominican Republic: “Puerto Rico always present a good level and despite being so young, they have experience. The matches between these two teams are always a battle and today it was no different”

Javier Gaspar, Coach of Puerto Rico: “I think we battled for the first two sets, played well and we could have won one of the two sets. Our serves were consistent but in the third set we could not keep their rhythm. They are a team very strong- We did not have the rhythm in different plays and we paid the price”.

Natalia Valentín, Captain of Puerto Rico: “We played well through the whole match until we reached the 20-point plateau when we didn’t execute. They grew up and were playing at home.