Girls U17 Pan American Cup A Great Preparation Towards the World Championship

Guatemala City, Guatemala, May 26, 2024 – Coaches from current U17 NORCECA champion  Mexico, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, and Peru agreed that the Girls U17 Pan American Cup is a great opportunity to prepare before they compete from August 17 to 24 in the FIVB  World Championship in Peru.

The day before the competition begins at the Multi-Sports Dome in Guatemala City, the eight coaches of the participating teams shared their initial impressions.

The Girls U17 Pan American Cup, to be held from May 27 to June 1, is part of the qualification system for the 2025 NORCECA Continental Championship and the 2026 FIVB World Championship.

Christian López, Head Coach of Costa Rica: “We believe we are in good shape; we have trained a lot. At this age, it is mostly a learning process. We come to try to do our best, have a very good tournament, but above all, gain experience. There are new faces on the team, 5 or 6 are from the team that competed last year in Honduras”. 

Costa Rica

Carina Menes Carrion, Head Coach of Cuba: “We come with good preparation. Last year, when we competed in the NORCECA U17, we didn’t win a medal and finished in sixth place. This year, we have prepared competitively; we are preparing this U17 team for the U19 tournament. We worked a lot on our reception, which was our weakness in the previous competition. We are here to fight for the championship”.


Marcelo Cezarano, Head Coach of Dominican Republic: “We are training hard to improve. I am the new coach, and the players are adapting very well to the change. The main goal is our preparation for the World Championship. We will go into every match to win. We are looking for good results”.

Dominican Republic

Celeste Cifuentes, Head Coach of Guatemala: “My team is very motivated and strengthened. They are a group of girls who have worked since they were in mini-volleyball at the national level. For most of the team, as well as for me as a coach, it is a new experience competing internationally. We know it is a tough competition, facing strong teams in the area. We have worked on the psychological aspect of the game, and we will try to exploit our strengths”.


Ignacio Sánchez Palmeros, Head Coach of Mexico: “This tournament is a good scale to see where we stand before we compete in the World Championship. It allows us to test other athletes; we have two injured players, and we will have the opportunity to see others play, so we can arrive with the best team at the World Championship. Coming as NORCECA champions gives us the chance to play good volleyball because all the teams will play at one hundred percent against us, and that’s what we want for our development”.


Antonio Rizola, Head Coach of Peru: “I love the Pan American Cup; it is a fundamental competition for all the teams in the Americas because we don’t play against each other much. Especially this Peruvian team, it will be our first time together, and I need to use it as a laboratory because from the team that qualified last year for the World Championship, I changed players’ positions and added five new players, everything is unknown. The team is anxious, it’s necessary to remember that they are all girls, and we will seek our own objectives as a team, our growth in every aspect of its performance”.


Juan Carlos Núñez, Head Coach of Puerto Rico: “We are preparing for the World Championship in August. After the NORCECA Championship in Honduras, we had a tryout for new players and nearly 300 girls participated, we selected 20 who trained for a month and a half to come here. Of the 12 players on the team, this championship will help me evaluate 8 girls who were not in Honduras. It is a good period to decide on the team we will take to Peru”.

Puerto Rico

William Ruiz, Head Coach of Venezuela: “First of all we want to thank NORCECA and its president Cristóbal Marte for the invitation, and our Federation for including us again in these events. We are starting a new cycle, with a new group of young girls in our country, aiming to reach the elite of South American and World volleyball”.