Dominican Republic defeats Mexico in Straight Sets

GUATEMALA CITY, Guatemala, May 28, 2024.-  Dominican Republic defeated Mexico 3-0 (25-19, 25-20, 25-15) on the second day of action at the first Girls U17 Pan American Cup being held in Guatemala City.

Dominican Republic and Mexico both have a 1-1 record in Pool A. The Dominicans will finish the pool-play against Cuba, while Mexico will face Peru. Pool winners will advance directly to the semifinals, with the second and third place teams competing in the quarterfinals.

Dominican Republic was dominant throughout the match, to cancel out Mexico, which struggled to respond.

Estel Santos, DOM spikes

The Dominicans capitalized their victory with advantages in attacks (37-25), blocks (8-1), and aces (8-2), but committed more errors (26-22).

Two Dominican players finished with double-digits, Virelys Rivera with 14 points  on 10 kills, two blocks, and two aces, and team captain Estel Santos with 12 points on 11 kills and one block. Opposite hitter Rayni Mondesi contributed 9 points.

Aitana Rettke with 9 points was the top scorer for Mexico.

Karen Gonzalez, MEX, defense

Compared to their loss yesterday against Peru, Dominican captain Estel Santos said, “today our spirit was much better, we also played as a team with a lot of communication”.  Regarding the win, she expressed, “we studied Mexico and knew how to control them with directed serves, which helped us succeed”.

Brazilian Marceo Cezarano, coach of the Dominican Republic explained that things went well, saying, “today we saw what we have been training for, a strong level”.  He also indicated that they studied Mexico very well, “we changed our system, nullified player number 13 (Aitama Rettke), even when they moved her from outside hitter to middle, and we knew how to control her”.

Mexico’s setter, Gabriela Garza, summarized the defeat by saying, “our reception failed, our attitude was off, and we let the Dominicans take control”.

Mexico’s coach Ignacio Sánchez Palmeros acknowledged that the team had a bad match and there was overconfidence from both the team and the technical staff, “this will serve to bring the players down to earth, and if we have the quality, we can recover and finish the competition well”.