Dominican Republic dominates Cuba with Serves at NORCECA Sub-17

TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras, November 22, 2023. – Dominican Republic defeated Cuba 3-0 (27-25, 25-17, 25-15), dominating with a 15-6 advantage in serves and maintaining their undefeated record at the NORCECA Girls’ U17 Continental Championship being held in Tegucigalpa, Honduras.

With the victory, Dominican Republic has a 2-0 record in Pool B and will face Canada (2-0) on Thursday to advance directly to Saturday’s semifinals. Cuba (0-2) will go against Costa Rica (0-2) for the third place in pool and a spot in the quarterfinals.

The tournament qualifies the top three teams for the FIVB World Championship in 2024.

In addition to dominating in serves, Dominican Republic outperformed Cuba 39 to 25 in attacks and 6-5 in blocks. Cuba limited their errors to 17, while the Dominicans committed 21.

Caroline Rodriguez and Virelys Rivera de DOM block

Three Dominican players scored double digits, outside hitter Virelys Rivera leading with 16 points (12 attacks, 4 aces), opposite Rayni Mondesi with 13 points (9 attacks, one block, 3 aces), and team captain Estel Santos with 12 points (10 attacks and 2 aces).

Cuban outside hitter Salet Castillo Valdes was the only player with double digits, scoring 14 points on 12 kills, one block, and ace.

Dominican team captain, Estel Santos, said, 2The first set was very close; I think we were too confident. We were able to press with the serve, as we did in the previous game; that’s what has kept us going, along with our friendship and good spirit”.

Cuba’s top scorer, Salet Castillo, said, “Our reception failed us a lot. I think we put too much pressure on ourselves because this is our first international competition. The attack went well, and I think we could have won the match”.