Mexico finishes fifth over Dominican Republic

TEPIC, Nayarit, Mexico, July 16, 2022.- Mexico finished in fifth place at the Men’s NORCECA Final Six Pan American Cup defeating the Dominican Republic 3-1 (25-20, 21-25, 25-18, 26-24 ) on Saturday at the Amado Nervo Auditorium in Tepic, Nayarit.

Host Mexico finished the event with a 2-4 record and the Dominican Republic with 0-6; Mexico also defeated the Dominican Republic in four sets in the preliminary round.

Mexico held a comfortable 55-49 advantage in spikes and a 6-3 margin in aces. The Dominicans finished with one more point in blocking (8-7). Mexico scored 29 points from Dominican errors and conceded 27.

Corner hitter Mauro Fuentes led the Mexican offense with 22 points from 19 kills, one block and two aces, followed by opposite player Luis Hernandez with 13 points from 12 kills and one block. Also with double digits were attacker Josué López and center back Jonathan Martínez with 11 and 10 points respectively.

Leading the Dominicans was opposite player and team captain Henry Tapia with 22 points from 17 kills, 3 blocks and 2 aces, outside hitter Wilfredo Hernández with 17 points from 14 kills, 2 blocks and an ace, and outside hitter Héctor Cruz contributed with 14 points from 13 attacks and one block.

Dominican Henry Tapia against Mexican block of Axel Tellez (9) and Mauro Fuentes (12)

Mauro Fuentes, Mexico’s Top Scorer: “Realistically, the competition was tough, we finished fifth out of six teams. We leave with a good taste in our mouths because we closed with a victory, but we have to put our feet on the ground because we need to work hard to face the teams that were superior to us. This has been a great learning for our preparation for the world championship in Poland.”

Henry Tapia, Captain of the Dominican Republic: “We are sad because we couldn’t reach the result we were looking for. The tournament contributes to our growth, the more we compete, the more we improve”.