Puerto Rico Earn a Direct Ticket to Semifinals at NORCECA U19

PONCE, Puerto Rico, MY 16, 2024.- Puerto Rico earned a direct ticket to the Boys U19 NORCECA semifinals after defeating Dominican Republic 3-0 (25-23, 25-13, 25-13) on Thursday at Salvador Coliseum in Ponce, Puerto Rico.

Puerto Rico advanced to Saturday’s semifinal as undefeated (3-0) winner of pool B. Dominican Republic finished third with a 2-1 record and will face Cuba, runner-up in pool A, in Friday’s quarterfinals.

Costa Rica, second in pool B, will play quarterfinals against Canada, third in pool A.

Puerto Rico came from behind in the first set (7-10), managing to pull ahead up to point 12 after six consecutive Dominican errors. In the following two sets, the home team had no difficulties securing the victory in straight sets.

Kelvin Miguel Mercedes Zorrilla DOM y Adrian Alejandro Carrillo PUR

Puerto Rico held a 40 to 33 advantage in attack points, 5 to 4 in block points, and three to one in aces. Puerto Rico scored 27 points from Dominican errors and gave away 12.

Puerto Rico’s captain, Jean Paul González, led all scorers with 19 points on 18 attacks and one block.

Opposite hitter Malik Britton led Dominican Republic with 14 points on 13 attacks and one block.

Ignacio Cruz, libero of Puerto Rico: “In the first set we made quite a few errors, but thanks to our concentration we were able to pull through and win the match. We adjusted our blocking because they have tall players, like Malik Britton, and that allowed us to defend well. We are taking it step by step because our goal is to reach the final match”.

Malik Britton, top scorer of Dominican Republic: “We started with good energy, but we couldn’t maintain it in the last two sets. In the next round, we will fight with a positive attitude”.