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Guatemala edges Puerto Rico in quarterfinals


FORT MCMURRAY, Canada, May 19, 2017 - Guatemala advances to the semi-finals of the U21 Pan American Cup (May 16 to 21), held at the Syncrude Sport and Wellness Centre at Keyano College in Fort McMurray.


Puerto Rico fell in this quarterfinal 2-3 (13-25, 25-22, 21-25, 25-22, 14-16), after a back and forth thrilling tie-break set. It was the longest match of the tournament so far at one hour and 36 minutes.


Reider Lucas, head coach of the Guatemalan side, was happy with this hard-fought win.


“My guys knew they had to do their best and they did. Puerto Rico was one of the favourite teams of the tournament,” he said. “They’re taller and they played very well. My guys gave everything they could to now be one the best four teams. That’s a very good feeling. Tomorrow will be another day. Now I’m really happy with this result.”


Wagner Chacon scored 21 points for the winning team, followed by teammate Erik Flores with 18 (including three aces).


Pedro Molina of Puerto Rico topped all scoring with 28 points.


Angel Meléndez, Puerto Rico’s head coach, said:  “Guatemala showed a lot of character today, so they deserve the win. We started slow and we made a lot of silly mistakes that cost us the game. Guatemala was just better than us today.”