Canada Battles to prevail over Nicaragua and reach Semifinals

COLIMA, Mexico, June 20, 2024. – Canada fought hard to defeat Nicaragua 3-0 (27-25, 25-16, 25-20) and reach the Boys U17 Pan American Cup semifinals in Colima, Mexico.

Canada will face Puerto Rico in Friday’s semifinals. In the other semifinal, Cuba will compete against Mexico.

Nicaragua will play in the classification match for positions 5 to 7 against Guatemala; the winner will finish the event in fifth place, and the loser will play for positions 6-7 against Costa Rica on Saturday.


Canada managed to control Nicaragua thanks to their advantage in attacks (40-29) and blocks (11-4); they also held a comfortable margin in serves (4-2). Canada gave away 26 points on errors, while Nicaragua gave away 22.

Canadian outside hitter Danilo Skipina scored 17 points, including 11 kills, a match-high of 5 blocks, and one serve. Opposite hitter William Clarmo registered 11 points on 9 kills and two blocks.

Nicaraguan outside hitter Joaquin Padilla led his team with 16 points on 15 kills and one serve. Middle blocker Keneth Urtecho scored 9 points.

Joaquin Padilla NCA

Canada and Nicaragua faced off in an exciting first set where Nicaragua came back from a 13-17 deficit to tie the game, thanks to middle blocker Keneth Urtecho. Service errors from both Canada and Nicaragua extended the set to a thrilling 27-25, with a block from Canadian Kaysen Flaman securing the final point. Canada jumped to an early 10-4 lead in the second set and kept the lead throughout the set. In the third set, with Canada holding set point at 24-18, a kill from Axel Arbizu and three consecutive Canadian errors brought the score to 24-20. However, the winning point came when Nicaragua committed a service error.

Canada’s leading scorer Danilo Skipina said “Coming off the bench it was a rusty start, but it was a really good game, near the end I started to pick up on the reception on hitting. Both teams came together towards the end, it was a good experience. About the semifinals, Puerto Rico is a great team as ours; we’re just going to play together as a team and make sure we have good block-defense, in addition to do whatever we can to hit the ball and win on offense, make them work for it”.

Joaquín Padilla, top Scorer for Nicaragua, commented, “In general, we played well. We needed better reception. It was an exciting game. Canada had better block and serve. Tomorrow, we’ll give it our all against Guatemala”.